[ tawr-ti-kol-is ]
/ ˌtɔr tɪˈkɒl ɪs /

noun Pathology.

a condition in which the neck is twisted and the head inclined to one side, caused by spasmodic contraction of the muscles of the neck.

Nearby words

  1. tortelier,
  2. tortellini,
  3. torten,
  4. tortes,
  5. tortfeasor,
  6. tortile,
  7. tortilla,
  8. tortilla flat,
  9. tortillon,
  10. tortious

Origin of torticollis

1805–15; < New Latin, equivalent to Latin tort(us) twisted (see tort) + -i- -i- + coll(um) neck + -is noun suffix

Also called wryneck. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for torticollis

British Dictionary definitions for torticollis


/ (ˌtɔːtɪˈkɒlɪs) /


pathol an abnormal position of the head, usually with the neck bent to one side, caused congenitally by contracture of muscles, muscular spasm, etc
Derived Formstorticollar, adjective

Word Origin for torticollis

C19: New Latin, from Latin tortus twisted (from torquēre to twist) + collum neck

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for torticollis



1811, Modern Latin, from Latin tortus "crooked, twisted" (see tortuous) + collum "neck" (see collar (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for torticollis


[ tôr′tĭ-kŏlĭs ]


A contracted state of the neck muscles producing an unnatural position of the head.wryneck
Related formstor′ti•collar (-kŏlər) adj.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.