Pseudo scapula alata: a case report of a scapular osteochondroma

Rita M. Sousa, Rita Sapage, Carlos Branco, Diogo Sousa, Joao Reis, Ricardo Geraldes, Ricardo Branco, António Gomes Cruz


An osteochondroma is a type of cartilaginous tumour, that frequently affects long bones. In the scapula, although rare, this benign tumour is the most frequently encountered. The symptoms at this location are usually related to the mass effect that it can produce. Surgery is recommended when symptoms of compression, pain or an increase in size are noticed. The authors present a case of a 11 year-old-boy with an osteochondroma on the ventral surface of the scapula, that cause a pseudo winging of this bone and pain, with indication for surgical excision. Pseudo scapula alata should be differentiated from the true one, which is a dynamic dyskinesia. In the presence of this static deformity the surgeon must keep in mind other diagnosis as a scapular osteochondroma or other mass effect lesions. This benign tumour does not frequently suffer malignant transformation. Surgery can lead to a complete resolution of the symptoms, and if done properly decrease to almost zero the rate of recurrence. The diagnosis of the tumour in this location can be delayed due to its atypical location and presentation. With this case report the authors expect to raise awareness of the unusual manifestations of osteochondroma, especially in the paediatric setting.



Osteochondroma, Scapular tumour, Pseudo scapula alata, Paediatric dyskinesia

Full Text:



Alatassi R, Koaban S, Almugebel I, Alshehri A. Scapular osteochondroma with winging: A case report. Int J Surg Case Rep. 2018;45:138-42.

Chillemi C, Franceschini V, Ippolito G. Osteochondroma as a cause of scapular winging in an adolescent: a case report and review of the literature. J Med Case Rep. 2013;7:220.

Oliveira V, Costa L, Freitas D, Aido R, Cardoso P. Exérese de osteocondroma - Cirurgia sempre fácil ou sempre difícil? Rev Port Ortop Traum. 2012;20(3):311-16.

Salini V, De Amicis D, Guerra G, Iarussi T, Sacco R, Orso C.A. Osteochondroma of the scapula: a case report. J Orthopaed Traumatol. 2007;8:33-35.

Tittal P, Pawar I, Kapoor SK. Pseudo-winging of scapula due to benign lesions of ventral surface of scapula - Two unusual causes. J Clin Orthop Trauma. 2015;6(1):30-35.

Rameez R, Ul-Hassan M, Kotwal HA, Kangoo KAH, Nazir A. Painful Pseudowinging and Snapping of Scapula due to Subscapular Osteochondroma: A Case Report. J Orthop Case Rep. 2016;6(5):96-99.

Kumar C Y, Shervegar S, Gadi D, P R. Solitary sessile osteochondroma of scapula, a rare case report. J Clin Diagn Res. 2014;8(3):174-75.

Esenkaya I. Pseudowinging of the scapula due to subscapular osteochondroma. Orthopedics. 2005;28(2):171-72.

Sivananda P, Rao BK, Kumar PV, Ram GS. Osteochondroma of the ventral scapula causing scapular static winging and secondary rib erosion. J Clin Diagn Res. 2014;8(5):LD03-LD5.

Clarke DO, Crichlow A, Christmas M. The unusual osteochondroma: A case of snapping scapula syndrome and review of the literature. Orthop Traumatol Surg Res. 2017;103(8):1295-298.

Vaishya R, Dhakal S, Vaish A. A solitary osteochondroma of the scapula. BMJ Case Rep. 2014;2014:bcr2013202273.

Ogawa K, Inokuchi W. Solitary Osteochondroma of the Ventral Scapula Associated with Large Bursa Formation and Pseudowinging of the Scapula: A Case Report and Literature Review. Case Rep Orthop. 2018;2018:5145642.

Flugstad NA, Sanger JR, Hackbarth DA. Pseudo-winging of the scapula caused by scapular osteochondroma: review of literature and case report. Hand (N Y). 2015;10(2):353-356.

Ngongang FO, Fodjeu G, Fon AC. Surgical treatment of rare case of scapula osteochondroma in a resource limited setting: A case report. Int J Surg Case Rep. 2019;61:130-34.