Pyomyositis associated with chemotherapy for endometrial cancer: a case report
© Nakao et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2013
Received: 18 September 2012
Accepted: 26 November 2012
Published: 25 February 2013
Pyomyositis is a rare complication of chemotherapy for non-hematological malignancies. A 58-year-old woman with endometrial carcinoma, in whom pyomyositis developed during adjuvant chemotherapy, was presented in this report. After initiating empiric antibiotic therapy for febrile neutrocytopenia, screening CT showed multiple abscesses in the lower limbs. Operative drainage of the abscess was effective.
Pyomyositis is originally known as an infectious disease of the large skeletal muscles, which is common in tropical areas and often results in abscess formation and sepsis. In patients with pyomyositis, staphylococcus aureus is detected more often than streptococcus and other bacteria. Important factors of pyomyositis are reported to be local mechanical trauma, parasitic infections, and malnutrition. Furthermore, it is recently reported that pyomyositis is associated with the immunocompromised host due to infection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), hematological malignancies, and neutropenia secondary to oncologic chemotherapy .
To date, pyomyositis developing as a complication of chemotherapy in patients with gynecologic malignancy has been rarely reported . In this report, we presented a patient with pyomyositis who had received systemic chemotherapy for endometrial carcinoma.
A 58-year-old previously healthy Japanese woman (body mass index 22.1) presented sudden massive postmenopausal bleeding, and diagnosed endometrial carcinoma after gynecological, pathological, and radiological examinations. She did not have family history of cancer. She underwent total abdominal hysterectomy, bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy, pelvic lymphadenectomy, and sampling of para-aortic lymph nodes. Histopathology revealed endometrioid adenocarcinoma grade 1. Tumor cells involved the serosa of uterine corpus. The pathological diagnosis of endometrial carcinoma stage IIIc, T3a N1 (right obturator lymph node) M0, was made. The patient was planned to be given whole pelvic external irradiation followed by systemic chemotherapy.
The patient underwent open surgery. The incision was made in the left medial thigh and opened the fascia. Further incision was made in the swelling medial vastus muscle. About 50 mL of pus was drained. A Penrose drain was left in the abscess and the incision was closed. The drained pus showed the same bacteria with the bacteremia. The fever decreased and general conditions improved. In addition, 7 weeks oral administration of clindamycin (1.2 g/day) and levofloxacin (0.5 g/day) suppressed the relapse of inflammation.
Because of these severe complications, an additional course of chemotherapy was not given. After 40 months of this event, this patient is still alive with the disease.
Review of patients with pyomyositis associated with solid malignancies
The origin of cancer
Site of pyomyositis
VCR, BLM, CDDP, MTX, VP-16, CPA
VCR, BLM, CDDP, MTX, VP-16, CPA
CDDP, VDS, MMC
5-FU, DXR, CPA
Upper arm, lower limb
Streptococcus dysgalactiae equisimilis
Primary pyomyositis is believed to be caused by transient bacteremia, because it develops without an obvious penetrating injury or any other clear portals of entry in the majority of cases . Development of pyomyositis in patients with neoplastic diseases after chemotherapy is usually ascribed to neutropenia and/or immunodeficiency caused by cancer. However, subclinical myopathy secondary to malignancy and/or its treatment is another possible cause . Several chemotherapeutic drugs including anthracyclines, vinca alkaloids, and corticosteroids have been reported to induce muscle toxicity-related pyomyositis [7, 8]. It is recently reported that a woman with endometrial cancer develops pyomyositis after the first cycle of carboplatin and paclitaxel . Our patient also received docetaxel and dexamethasone. However, the muscle toxicity of docetaxel has never been reported. Whether pyomyositis observed in the above two cases was related to the drug was unclear.
Diagnosis of pyomyositis is facilitated by ultrasonography, MRI, or CT scanning of the affected area, and by aspiration of fluid for microbiological testing. According to previous literature, Staphylococcus aureus is the most common cause of pyomyositis. Several other bacteria including Gram-negative organisms, other Gram-positive organisms than Staphylococcus aureus (predominantly Streptococcus), anaerobes, mycobacteria, and fungi are implicated as a cause of pyomyositis .
Early diagnosis enables complete drainage of purulent materials and successful treatments, and leads to resolution in the vast majority of cases. The immune status of the host, clinical courses, and the number of abscess should be considered when determining the length of the treatment for pyomyositis.
We described an unusual case of pyomyositis associated with chemotherapy for gynecologic malignancy. This should be kept in mind in the differential diagnosis of febrile neutropenia.
Informed consent was obtained from the patient for publication of this case report and accompanying images. A copy of the written consent is available for review by the Editor-in-Chief of this journal.
YN contributed mainly in designing, literature review, and writing work. MY, MH, and MN have operated this case. SN, SA, MY, and TI gave advices and edited the discussion. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.
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