What other symptoms might occur with a neck spasm?

Neck spasm may accompany other symptoms that vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. Symptoms that frequently affect the neck or spine may also involve other body systems.

Musculoskeletal symptoms that may occur along with a neck spasm

Neck spasm may accompany other symptoms affecting the musculoskeletal system including:

  • Backache
  • Curvature of the spine
  • Muscle weakness or strain
  • Neck pain and stiffness
  • Pain, numbness or tingling in one arm
  • Shoulder or arm pain
  • Stiffness in the spine

Neurologic symptoms that may occur along with a neck spasm

Neck spasm may accompany symptoms related to the neurologic system including:

  • Headache (particularly in the back of the head)
  • Involuntary jerking or twisting of the head and facial muscles
  • Nerve problems that cause pain, numbness or tingling in an arm or shoulder

Symptoms that might indicate a serious condition

In some cases, neck spasm may occur with other symptoms that might indicate a serious condition that should be immediately evaluated in an emergency setting. Seek immediate medical care if you, or someone you are with, have neck spasm along with other serious symptoms including:

  • High fever (higher than 101 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • Impaired balance and coordination
  • Increased sensitivity to light
  • Loss of sensation in a limb or limbs
  • Muscle weakness
  • Nausea with or without vomiting
  • Severe headache
  • Stiff neck

What is a neck spasm?

Neck spasm is a sudden and involuntary contraction, or uncontrollable tightening and shaking, of a muscle in response to strain, overuse, weakness, or muscle pain related to injury or a disorder. In some conditions, such as cervical dystonia, the spasm may cause your head to turn or to jerk. Some, but not all, neck spasms occur close enough to the spinal cord or to the nerve roots leading in an... Read more about neck spasmintroduction


What causes a neck spasm?

Neck spasms can be caused by a muscle strain or muscle tension, either from physical exertion or from tensing the muscles unconsciously in response to stress.

Physical causes of a neck spasm

Neck spasm may be caused by external physical conditions including:

Medical Reviewer: Cynthia Haines, MD Last Annual Review Date: Aug 7, 2013 Copyright: © Copyright 2014 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Bones, Joints and Muscles

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