Bone, Joint and Muscle Conditions

Torticollis Symptoms and Diagnosis

Symptoms of Torticollis

Children with torticollis have a stiff neck and cannot move their necks very much. They hold their heads to one side. Their chins might point up a little bit.

Different types of torticollis may have different symptoms:

  • The faces of some children with fixed torticollis may look unbalanced or flattened (plagiocephaly). Children may also have mild delays in developing the ability to use their muscles (motor skills).
  • Along with a twisted neck, children with Klippel-Feil syndrome may have other problems, such as trouble hearing.

Torticollis Diagnosis

When you and your child come to our clinic, out doctors ask you questions about how your child has been developing. Doctors examine your child. The exam will likely include an evaluation of the nervous system and an eye test.

We may take X-rays, and ask for an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan of your child's spinal cord and brainstem. This is especially likely if your child has had developmental delays or if their neck is moderately or severely twisted and the doctor can find no explanation for it.