Show Summary Details
Page of

Spasmodic torticollis 

Spasmodic torticollis
Chapter:
Spasmodic torticollis
Author(s):

Ivan Donaldson

, C. David Marsden

, Susanne A. Schneider

, and Kailash P. Bhatia

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780192619112.003.0988
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD MEDICINE ONLINE (www.oxfordmedicine.com). © Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Medicine Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 22 October 2020

A fanciful interpretation of fossil records has suggested the existence of torticollis in dinosaurs (Kaiser 1954). It is uncertain when the disorder was first recognized in man but Michelangelo seems to depict this. Rabelais, the 16th century French physician, priest, and satirist, is credited with first using the term ‘torty colly’ from which torticollis is derived. Involuntary neck movement was described by Wepfer in 1727, but attempts at surgical correction are recorded as early as 1641 (Finney and Hughson 1925). By the end of the 19th century the disorder was well known and several excellent papers by French and British physicians date from this era (Gowers 1893, Brissaud 1895, Redard 1898, Cruchet 1907). At this time there was a tendency to regard many, if not most, of these cases as being due to hysteria. By the 1920s to the 1940s the pendulum had swung the other way and most cases were thought to be organic. In 1943 Patterson and Little clearly outlined the major features in a clinical study of 103 patients with spasmodic torticollis. Six years later, in another large series of patients, the clinical, electromyographic, and surgical aspects were well described (Herz and Glaser 1949, Herz and Hoefer 1949, Putnam et al. 1949).

Access to the complete content on Oxford Medicine Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.