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Twisted Neck

Twisted neck is also called as Torticollis and in this the position of the head or neck will abnormal. The Latin word tortus means twisted and the word collum means neck. Thus Torticollis means twisted neck.

Twisted neck is categorized based on the misplaced position of neck and head. The categories are
1. Laterocollis
2. Rotational twisted neck
3. Anterocollis
4. Retrocollis
5. Combination

Laterocollis : In Laterocollis the head will be seen as dripping towards shoulder.
Rotational Twisted Neck: In Rotational Twisted Neck, the head will be rotating along longitudinal axis.
Anterocollis : In Anterocollis, the head and neck will be bending forward.
Retrocollis : In Retrocollis, the head and the neck will be extending backward.
Combination : In this, the presence of many of the above movements can be seen.
Twisted neck can be categorized as Congenital muscular twisted neck and Acquired twisted neck

Congenital Muscular Twisted Neck

In Congenital muscular twisted neck, the sternocleidomastoid muscle is contracted or shortened and results in bending laterally to the affected side and rotating to the opposite side.

Acquired Twisted Neck

Acquired twisted neck will be a result of diseases like tonsillitis, cervical vertebrae, adenitis, retropharyngeal abscess, cervical glands getting enlarged, or cerebellar tumors.

Prevention of Twisted Neck

In children, correct positioning of the head is needed. Parents need to check the position of the babys head every two to three hours during the waking hours.
Face may become asymmetric if the head position is not corrected within the age of eighteen months in children.


The treatment includes multiple phases like the ones given below.

  1. Extended heat application
  2. Exercises for neck and shoulder
  3. Massage
  4. Stretches


For the diagnosis, the study of the surroundings or environment in which the child was born, any chance of trauma or any other symptoms are checked. During physical examination, the presence of twisted neck is understood when the ability to rotate or bend to a side opposite to that of the affected one will be seen restricted.