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Kristina Shaffer, MD, Curt S Koontz, MD, Robert Vandewalle, MD, MBA, Shadi Hamouri, MD, Nathan M Novotny, MD, Shadi Hamouri, MD
Torticollis is a topic covered in the Pediatric Surgery NaT.

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What is torticollis?

Torticollis or wry neck refers to the abnormal contracture of the neck musculature resulting in rotation, flexion and tilting of the head. Torticollis has multiple etiologies and can be viewed as a symptom of an underlying condition rather than a diagnosis. Torticollis can affect infants, as well as adults, and can be acute or chronic. Etiologies include congenital, familial, traumatic, infectious or medication related. Discerning the etiology of the torticollis is essential because the treatment is directed towards the cause.

What is the most common form of torticollis?

Congenital muscular torticollis (CMT) is the most common form of torticollis and typically develops within the first month of life. CMT is often, but not always, associated with a palpable unilateral mass within the substance of the affected sternocleidomastoid muscle (SCM) and contracture of the SCM. Thus, the typical findings are those that one would expect if the SCM were foreshortened: ipsilateral tilting with contralateral rotation of the head. If not noted early in the course of the disease, the mass may involute into a fibrous band with persistence of SCM contracture. There are usually no associated abnormalities.

Content in this topic is referenced in SCORE Torticollis overview

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Last updated: August 3, 2018


Shaffer, Kristina, et al. "Torticollis." Pediatric Surgery NaT, American Pediatric Surgical Association, 2018. APSA Webapp, www.pedsurglibrary.com/apsa/view/Pediatric-Surgery-NaT/829699/all/Torticollis.
Shaffer K, Koontz CS, Vandewalle R, Hamouri S, Novotny NM, Hamouri S. Torticollis. In: Waldhausen J, Powell D, Hirschl R, eds. Pediatric Surgery NaT. American Pediatric Surgical Association; 2018. https://www.pedsurglibrary.com/apsa/view/Pediatric-Surgery-NaT/829699/all/Torticollis. Accessed June 25, 2019.
Shaffer, K., Koontz, C. S., Vandewalle, R., Hamouri, S., Novotny, N. M., & Hamouri, S. (2018). Torticollis. In Waldhausen, J., Powell, D., & Hirschl, R. (Eds.), Pediatric Surgery NaT. Available from https://www.pedsurglibrary.com/apsa/view/Pediatric-Surgery-NaT/829699/all/Torticollis
Shaffer K, Koontz CS, Vandewalle R, Hamouri S, Novotny NM, Hamouri S. Torticollis [Internet]. In: Waldhausen J, Powell D, Hirschl R, editors. Pediatric Surgery NaT. American Pediatric Surgical Association; 2018. [cited 2019 June 25]. Available from: https://www.pedsurglibrary.com/apsa/view/Pediatric-Surgery-NaT/829699/all/Torticollis.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - ELEC T1 - Torticollis ID - 829699 A1 - Shaffer,Kristina,MD AU - Koontz,Curt,MD AU - Vandewalle,Robert,MD, MBA AU - Hamouri,Shadi,MD AU - Novotny,Nathan,MD AU - Hamouri,Shadi,MD ED - Waldhausen,John, ED - Powell,David, ED - Hirschl,Ron, Y1 - 2018/08/03/ BT - Pediatric Surgery NaT UR - https://www.pedsurglibrary.com/apsa/view/Pediatric-Surgery-NaT/829699/all/Torticollis PB - American Pediatric Surgical Association DB - APSA Webapp DP - Unbound Medicine ER -