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Torticollis (cont.)

What Are Torticollis Symptoms and Signs?

  • Because spasmodic torticollis is an abnormal contraction of the muscle in one side of the neck, people will appear with their head turned to one side. Neck muscles and those between the neck and shoulder will be tense and tender, causing neck pain.
  • People with acute torticollis will be unwilling to turn their head to one side or may have their head turned slightly away from the side of discomfort.
  • Deviation of the eyes (oculogyric crisis) where the eyes involuntarily look upward and protrusion of the tongue (buccolingual crisis) where the tongue sticks out involuntarily may also occur.
  • With spasmodic torticollis (cervical dystonia), there may be neck muscle spasms that are sustained (tonic) or jerky (clonic).
  • Other symptoms may include shoulder pain, back pain, headache, neck cramps, muscle tightness, muscle pain, or burning sensations.
  • Attacks of benign paroxysmal torticollis in infants may also be accompanied by symptoms such as vomiting, irritability, and drowsiness.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/4/2016

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Torticollis »

Torticollis (from the Latin torti, meaning twisted and collis, meaning neck) manifests as involuntary contractions of the neck muscles, leading to abnormal postures and movements of the head.

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