Introduction. Colorectal cancer and diverticular disease are conditions with high prevalence, the number of new cases diagnosed annually reaching millions. Diverticular disease progresses to diverticulitis in 4-15% of cases. Diverticular disease and colorectal cancer can have similar clinical presentations, making the differential diagnosis difficult, especially in an acute stage.
Case presentation. We present the case of a 79 year-old female, who presented to the emergency room complaining of diffuse abdominal pain, diarrhea within the previous three days, a weight loss of ten kilograms in the previous month, fatigability and asthenia. During the physical examination, a palpable
tumor mass in the right flank was found. From the paraclinical results, a severe anemia and leukocytosis could be noted.
Conclusion On the basis of these results alone, a final diagnosis could not be established. Additional imaging tests were needed: CT scan and repeated colonoscopies. These confirmed the final diagnosis of complicated diverticular disease, the initial presumption being of an ascending colon tumor.
Key words acute diverticulitis, colorectal cancer.