Myositis ossificans is the development of bone where other muscle or other soft tissue is normally present. This bone formation is often painful and limits the range of motion in the affected area. Myositis ossificans develops due to deep muscle bruises after traumatic injury or as a result of inherited conditions. The inherited form, fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP), is extremely rare and is caused by a specific gene mutation.
Symptoms of myositis ossifications caused by trauma include a solid bump, pain, and limited range of motion. Most bone growths develop in the arms or legs within a few weeks of injury and tend to occur in young adults or paraplegics, although anyone who experiences a deep muscle bruise may be affected. Individuals with myositis ossificans from FOP generally show symptoms before the age of 10. The symptoms become worse with age and may cause severe pain. FOP eventually causes the skeleton of the affected individual to fuse into a single bone structure.
Myositis ossificans is diagnosed using medical imaging to reveal abnormal bone growth. Treatments for myositis ossifications depend on the subtype and severity of bone formation. Minor myositis ossificans from trauma will often resolve without treatment. Medications may be used to decrease inflammation and pain. Surgery may be used in severe cases following trauma, but often worsens symptoms for individuals with FOP. There is currently no cure for FOP. If you are suffering from myositis ossificans, talk to your doctor about the most current treatment options.