Background: Complications of solitary or multiple osteochondromas are rare but have been reported in recent literature. Most reported complications arose in patients with multiple and/or sizable osteochondromas.
Case presentation: A 22-year-old, female, Caucasian patient with obesity presented with intermittent knee pain and hematoma of the right calf. The MRI depicted a small, sharp exostosis tip of the dorsal distal femur with a surrounding soft-tissue mass. After profuse bleeding occurred during biopsy of the soft tissue mass, angiography revealed a pseudoaneurysm of the right popliteal artery. In a second-stage surgery the exostosis tip and pseudoaneurysm were resected.
Conclusion: Complications can also arise in small, seemingly harmless osteochondromas. Surgical resection should be considered as a preventive measure when exostoses form sharp tips close to neurovascular structures regardless of total osteochondroma size.