Wry Neck Overview
Another name for Wry Neck is Torticollis.
What is torticollis?
A person with torticollis has uncontrolled spasms of the muscles in the neck, which result in the neck remaining in a twisted position. Torticollis usually affects the sternocleidomastoid muscle, a powerful muscle that connects the upper chest to a point on the skull, just behind the ear. Contraction and spasm of the sternocleidomastoid muscle causes the head to remain rotated and tilted to one side. The most common cause of torticollis is a drug side effect. Rarely, infants are born with torticollis.
What are the symptoms of torticollis?
Symptoms of torticollis include neck pain, neck stiffness, and neck tenderness. A person with torticollis is unable to move the neck, and the head remains turned and tilted to one side.
How does the doctor treat torticollis?
Treatment for torticollis may include medications that relax the muscles, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for pain, narcotic pain medication, and physical therapy. Rarely, surgery is required to treat an infant with torticollis.
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- Shim JS, Noh KC, Park SJ. Treatment of congenital muscular torticollis in patients older than 8 years. J Pediatr Orthop. 2004 Nov-Dec;24(6):683-8.