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Psoas muscle metastatic disease mimicking a psoas abscess on imaging
  1. Christopher Gunn and
  2. Mazyar Fani
  1. Department of General Surgery, Wrightington Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust, Wigan, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Christopher Gunn; christophergunn{at}


Here, we report a case of malignant psoas syndrome presented to us during the second peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our patient had a medical history of hypertension, recently diagnosed with left iliac deep vein thrombosis and previous breast and endometrial cancers. She presented with exquisite pain and a fixed flexion deformity of the left hip. A rim-enhancing lesion was seen within the left psoas muscle and was initially deemed to be a psoas abscess. This failed to respond to medical management and attempts at drainage. Subsequent further imaging revealed the mass was of a malignant nature; histology revealing a probable carcinomatous origin. Following diagnosis, palliative input was obtained and, unfortunately, our patient passed away in a hospice shortly after discharge. We discuss the aetiology, radiological findings and potential treatments of this condition and learning points to prompt clinicians to consider this diagnosis in those with a personal history of cancer.

  • General surgery
  • Radiology
  • Oncology

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  • Contributors The literature review and report were conducted and written by CG under the supervision of MF, who approved the final manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.