torticollis

noun
tor·​ti·​col·​lis | \ ˌtȯr-tə-ˈkä-ləs How to pronounce torticollis (audio) \

Definition of torticollis

: an acute or chronic often painful condition characterized by involuntary intermittent or sustained contraction of the muscles of the neck (such as the sternocleidomastoid or trapezius) that causes the head to tilt or turn sideways, bend forward or backward, or jerk abnormally

Note: Torticollis may occur secondary to an injury or a preexisting condition (such as a musculoskeletal abnormality or a neurodegenerative disease) but is often of unknown cause.

called also wryneck

Examples of torticollis in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Researchers at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center have learned that babies born with neonatal abstinence syndrome are more likely to have torticollis, an abnormal neck condition. Anne Saker, Cincinnati.com, "How Cradle Cincinnati renews its war on Hamilton County’s infant mortality," 28 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'torticollis.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of torticollis

circa 1811, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for torticollis

New Latin, from Latin tortus twisted + -i- + collum neck — more at collar

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Time Traveler for torticollis

Time Traveler

The first known use of torticollis was circa 1811

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Cite this Entry

“Torticollis.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/torticollis. Accessed 7 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for torticollis

torticollis

noun
tor·​ti·​col·​lis | \ ˌtȯrt-ə-ˈkäl-əs How to pronounce torticollis (audio) \

Medical Definition of torticollis

: an acute or chronic often painful condition characterized by involuntary intermittent or sustained contraction of the muscles of the neck (as the sternocleidomastoid or trapezius) that causes the head to tilt or turn sideways, bend forward or backward, or jerk abnormally

Note: Torticollis may occur secondary to injury or a preexisting condition (as musculoskeletal abnormality or neurodegenerative disease) but is often of unknown cause. When occurring in animals, torticollis may also be caused by bacterial or parasitic infection or nutritional imbalance.

called also wryneck

— compare cervical dystonia

More from Merriam-Webster on torticollis

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about torticollis

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