Myositis Ossificans

J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2015 Oct;23(10):612-22. doi: 10.5435/JAAOS-D-14-00269. Epub 2015 Aug 28.


Myositis ossificans is a self-limiting, benign ossifying lesion that can affect any type of soft tissue, including subcutaneous fat, tendons, and nerves. It is most commonly found in muscle as a solitary lesion. Ossifying soft-tissue lesions historically have been inconsistently classified. Fundamentally, myositis ossificans can be categorized into nonhereditary and hereditary types, with the latter being a distinct entity with a separate pathophysiology and treatment approach. The etiology of myositis ossificans is variable; however, clinical presentation generally is characterized by an ossifying soft-tissue mass. Advanced cross-sectional imaging alone can be nonspecific and may appear to be similar to more sinister etiologies. Therefore, the evaluation of a suspicious soft-tissue mass often necessitates multiple imaging modalities for accurate diagnosis. When imaging is indeterminate, biopsy may be required for a histologic diagnosis. However, histopathology varies based on stage of evolution. The treatment of myositis ossificans is complex and is often made in a multidisciplinary fashion because accurate diagnosis is fundamental to a successful outcome.

Keywords: contusion; heterotopic ossification; myositis ossificans circumscripta; pseudomalignant myositis ossificans; sarcoma.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Diagnostic Imaging / methods
  • Humans
  • Myositis Ossificans / diagnosis*
  • Myositis Ossificans / pathology
  • Soft Tissue Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Soft Tissue Neoplasms / pathology