“-Omas” presenting as “-itis”: acute inflammatory presentations of common gastrointestinal neoplasms

  • Jyoti Narayanswami
  • Daniel A. SmithEmail author
  • Michael Enzerra
  • Amir Ata Rahnemai-Azar
  • Elias Kikano
  • Nikhil H. Ramaiya
Review Article


Oncologic emergencies have a high rate of morbidity and mortality. This review covers several scenarios of gastrointestinal malignancies presenting emergently as various acute abdominal pathologies. Radiologists should be familiar with the typical imaging findings, clinical presentations, and laboratory values which may suggest a background neoplasm, particularly when encountered in the context of an acute inflammatory state. Imaging plays a vital role in the workup of these patients; delays in appropriate diagnosis negatively affect outcomes, oftentimes resulting in the need for additional intervention. It is important for radiologists to understand which patients may have a higher likelihood of an underlying malignancy. Correctly identifying these malignancies when seen in an emergency room is particularly vital, as radiologists may be among the first providers to suggest a diagnosis of cancer in this setting.


Diagnostic imaging Malignant neoplasms Pancreatic cancer Cancer of rectum Appendicitis Gallbladder cancer 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© American Society of Emergency Radiology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Radiology, University Hospitals Cleveland Medical CenterCase Western Reserve UniversityClevelandUSA

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