Published online Jul 27, 2022. doi: 10.4240/wjgs.v14.i7.696
Peer-review started: April 15, 2022
First decision: May 12, 2022
Revised: May 26, 2022
Accepted: June 22, 2022
Article in press: June 22, 2022
Published online: July 27, 2022
Colorectal adenocarcinoma is the third most common cancer worldwide. It accounts for almost 10% of all cancer-related deaths. Skeletal muscle is a very unusual site for metastasis from colorectal cancers and is associated with a poor prognosis and high mortality.
To review the literature for cases of skeletal muscle metastasis (SMM) from colorectal adenocarcinoma.
A systematic literature search using a validated search strategy was carried out to identify the incidence of SMM associated with colorectal adenocarcinoma. The studies identified were tabulated in a PRISMA, and data was extracted in a tabulated form.
Twenty-nine studies were included in this literature review. SMM was most commonly detected in the thigh muscles. Most of the tumours had originated from the rectum or the right colon. The histopathology of the primary tumour was generally advanced. The mean time interval between the primary tumour and onset of SMM was 22 mo. In 3 cases, asymptomatic SMM had been picked up by advanced imaging systems, like fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomography scan.
SMM from colorectal adenocarcinomas is a rare complication. However, it is possible that the low incidence could be due to under-reporting. Early use of advanced imaging techniques and a high index of clinical suspicion might increase the reporting of SMM from colorectal adenocarcinoma.
Core Tip: Skeletal muscle metastasis (SMM) from a colorectal adenocarcinoma is a rare complication. Presentation usually occurs at a late stage, and prognosis remains poor. However, with a high index of suspicion and early use of advanced investigative modalities, like fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomography scan, SMM can be detected and treated at an earlier stage. Further research is required to better understand the prognosis and pathophysiology of SMM.