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Symptoms » Stiff neck » Glossary

Glossary for Stiff neck

Medical terms related to Stiff neck or mentioned in this section include:

  • Acanthamoeba infection: Infection with a microscopic, free-living ameba that is readily found in the environment - soil, air and water. Most people exposed to the ameba will not become infected but when infections do occur, they tend to affect the eyes, central nervous system or can cause widespread infection throughout the body.
  • Acanthamoeba infection of the central nervous system: Infection by an amoebic organism called Acanthamoeba. Infection usually occurs when the amoeba enters through a break in the skin or through the nose. Infection can be localized or systemic where it can involve the central nervous system and cause potentially fatal meningoencephalitis. Infection of the eye can occur by cleaning contact lenses in contaminated water.
  • Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis: A type of encephalitis that usually follows an acute viral infection and involves an immune attack on myelin tissue which is part of the nervous system. Initial symptoms include fever, headache, vomiting and drowsiness followed by seizures, coma and paralysis. Often results in permanent neurological disorders.
  • Acute headache: Headache, or cephalgia, is defined as diffuse pain in various parts of the head, with the pain not confined to the area of distribution of a nerve.
  • Acute idiopathic polyneuritis: An inflammatory disorder of the peripheral nerves The condition is characterized by weakness, numbness or tingling in the legs or arms or occasionally loss of movement and feeling in the legs, arms, upper body and face. Some patients have minor symptoms and others suffer severe symptoms such as paralysis. Also called Guillain-Barre syndrome, infectious polyneuritis or acute febrile polyneuritis.
  • Angiostrongyliasis: Infection by a parasitic worm (Angiostrongylus). Infection can occur through eating contaminated raw animals such as snails, slugs, prawns or crabs which act as hosts to these parasites.
  • Ankylosing Spondylitis: A form of chronic inflammation of the spine which may also affect joints in the shoulder, hip, neck, ribs and jaw. May result in loss of mobility. Also called Marie-Strumpell disease.
  • Arbovirosis: An infectious disease caused by an arbovirus. The virus is transmitted by arthropods such as insects and ticks. Examples of arboviruses include Yellow Fever, Japanese encephalitis and tick-borne encephalitis. The symptoms may vary depending on the type of virus involved. The infection can lead to life-threatening brain inflammation.
  • Arthritis: A condition which is characterized by the inflammation of a joint
  • Atlanto-Axial Fusion: A congenital anomaly where the first neck vertebrae is fused to the skull.
  • Austrian syndrome: A condition where alcoholism is associated with heart failure and pneumococcal meningitis.
  • Bacterial meningitis: Bacterial meningitis is a form of meningitis caused by bacteria that normally lives in the mouth and throat. When the immune system is unable to supress this bacteria, it travels to the cerebrospinal spinal fluid in the brain. From there it affects the membranes surrounding the brain.
  • Bartschi-Rochaix syndrome: A range of symptoms caused by compression of the cerebral artery.
  • Basilar impression primary: A congenital bone abnormality where the skull and vertebrae meet which can compress some of the brain structures and result in neurological abnormalities. The defect is often associated with other vertebral abnormalities. In severe cases, the cerebrospinal fluid flow may be obstructed which can cause fluid to build up inside the skull (hydrocephalus).
  • Behcet's syndrome: Recurring inflammation of small blood vessels affecting various areas.
  • Bell's palsy: A one sided muscle paralysis of sudden onset due to a problem with the facial nerve
  • Birth defects: Conditions which are present at birth and are considered alterations to what is considered normal in a newborn baby
  • Bleeding symptoms: Any type of bleeding symptoms.
  • Borreliosis: An infectious bacterial disorder that is transmitted by ticks and causes skin rashes joint swelling and other symptoms similar to the flu.
  • Brain abscess: abscess in the brain may involve any of the lobes of the brain
  • Brain infection: Inflammation of the parietal layer and the brain tissue.
  • Brain symptoms: Symptoms affecting the brain
  • Brain tumor: A condition which is characterized by the abnormal growth of tissue within the brain
  • California encephalitis: An uncommon mosquito born virus (California encephalitis virus) which can cause brain inflammation in humans. The severity of symptoms is variable. The incubation period can last from a few days to a week. Infants and children tend to be more severely affected than adults who sometimes have no obvious symptoms.
  • Cancer: Abnormal overgrowth of body cells.
  • Cerebrovascular symptoms: Symptoms related to the brain's arteries
  • Cervical Spondylosis: Condition where bony changes within the cervical spine causes spinal cord compression with associated neck pain; usually seen in patients over 40 years of age.
  • Cervical injury: damage to white matter or myelinated fiber tracts that carry sensation and motor signals to and from the brain
  • Chemical meningitis: Symptomatic aseptic, chemical meningitis is a rare complication of myelography. A number of these cases have a history of one or more episodes of chemical meningitis preceding their arachnoiditis.
  • Chemical poisoning -- Strychnine: Strychnine is used as a rodenticide. Ingestion and other exposures to the chemical can cause various symptoms. The type and severity of symptoms varies depending on the amount of chemical involved and the nature of the exposure.
  • Congenital torticollis: A rare condition characterized by a twisted neck at birth.
  • Disc Disorders: Disorders that affect the discs of the spine
  • Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy, X-linked: A muscle wasting disorder mainly involving the muscles in the arms, legs, face, neck, spine and heart. Symptoms generally only occur in males but female carriers may have some symptoms.
  • Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy, dominant type: A rare disorder characterized by slowly-progressing weakness and wasting of skeletal and heart muscles. The dominant form of the disease is associated with greater variability of symptoms.
  • Encephalitis: Infection of the brain (as a symptom)
  • Erythema chronicum migrans: The first stage of Lyme disease which is transmitted by the bite of the Ixodid tick. The first stage involves a skin rash with systemic symptoms also often occurring.
  • Flu: Symptoms similar to flu including fever
  • Flu-like symptoms: Symptoms similar to flu including fever
  • Fungal meningitis: Fungal meningitis is an infection that causes swelling and irritation of the tissue around the brain and spinal cord. It usually strikes people whose weakened immune systems can't fight off infection. The disease is not common. but it can be very serious.
  • Granulomatous amebic encephalitis: Brain/CNS infection from Acanthamoeba bacteria
  • Granulomatous amoebic encephalitis: A rare opportunistic brain infection caused by certain amoeba - Acanthamoeba or Balamuthia amoebae. The amoeba generally only causes encephalitis in people who are immunocompromised or have a chronic disease such as diabetes. The amoeba initially cause pneumonitis or skin ulcers from with the amebas can spread to the brain to cause encephalitis. The condition is often fatal.
  • Guillain-Barre syndrome: An acute condition which is characterized by polyradiculoneuropathy that affects the peripheral nervous system
  • HHV-6 encephalitis: A rare condition that usually occurs in immunocompromised people such as those undergoing transplants or HIV patients. The condition causes neurological symptoms.
  • Head symptoms: Symptoms affecting the head or brain
  • Hemophilus influenzae B: Bacterial respiratory infection with dangerous complications.
  • Huntington's disease: Inherited disease causing progressive mental deterioration.
  • Hysteria: hysteria describes a state of mind, one of unmanageable fear or emotional excesses
  • Infection: Infections as a symptom.
  • Injury: Any damage inflicted in the body
  • Intracranial hemorrhage: Intracranial hemorrhage is a condition in which there is bleeding within the cranium of the skull.
  • Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis: Chronic arthritis affecting children and teens
  • Klippel Feil Syndrome: A rare congenital disorder characterized by abnormal fusion of two or more vertebrae in the neck. The disorder is often associated with other abnormalities but their incidence is highly variable.
  • Leptospirosis: Bacterial infection usually caught from animal urine.
  • Listeriosis: Bacterial food poisoning
  • Lyme disease: Lyme disease is an emerging infectious disease caused by at least three species of bacteria belonging to the genus Borrelia.
  • Lymphocytic choriomeningitis: Rodent-borne viral disease often causing meningitis or encephalitis
  • Lysteria monocytoigeneses meningitis: A very rare form of meningitis (bacterial infection of the brain membrane or meninges) caused by Listeria monocytogenes. The condition is more common in the elderly and those with poor immune system and death is common.
  • Melioidosis: Bacterial infection from soil or water.
  • Meningitis: Infection of the membrane around the brain (as a symptom)
  • Meningitis-like neck stiffness: Also known as neck rigidity.
  • Meningococcal A: Meningococcal meningitis is an infection that causes inflammation of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord. Meningococcal meningitis A is caused by meningococcus A which is mostly common in hyperendemic areas in Africa known as the meningitis belt.
  • Meningococcal B: Meningococcal meningitis B is an infection that causes inflammation of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord.
  • Meningococcal C: Meningitis C is a strain of meningococcal meningitis, a bacterial infection of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord.
  • Meningococcal disease: Dangerous bacterial infection causing meningitis or bacteremia.
  • Meningococcal infection: A rare infectious disease caused by a bacterium called Neisseria meningitides.
  • Meningoencephalitis: A condition which is characterized by inflammation of the brain and meninges
  • Movement symptoms: Changes to movement or motor abilities
  • Multiple myeloma: A rare malignant cancer that occurs in the bone marrow. More common in skull, spine, rib cage, pelvis and legs.
  • Muscle symptoms: Symptoms affecting the muscles of the body
  • Musculoskeletal symptoms: Symptoms affecting muscles or bones of the skeleton.
  • Naegleria: Rare bacterial infection from contaminated water
  • Neck conditions: Any condition that affects the neck
  • Neck injury: damage to white matter or myelinated fiber tracts that carry sensation and motor signals to and from the brain
  • Neck muscle strain: Damage to the neck muscle due to over-stretching of the muscle tissue. The damage involves tearing the muscle tissue. Small blood vessels may also be damaged which can cause bruising. The symptoms may vary from mild to severe depending on the severity of the damage. Neck strain is most often caused by whiplash in vehicle accidents.
  • Neck pain: Pain affecting the neck
  • Neck sprain:
  • Neck swelling: Swelling in or around the neck
  • Neck symptoms: Symptoms affecting the neck
  • Neonatal bacterial meningitis: Bacterial meningitis that occurs in an infant under 3 months of age. Bacterial meningitis is a bacterial brain infection.
  • Nerve symptoms: Symptoms affecting the nerves
  • Neurological symptoms: Any symptoms that are caused by neurological conditions
  • Neurosyphilis: Syphilis affecting the nervous system.
  • Nuchal rigidity: nuchal rigidity or neck stiffness is tested by placing the examiner's hand under the patient's head and gently trying to flex the neck. Undue resistance implies diffuse irritation of the cervical nerve roots from meningeal inflammation
  • Nuchal rigidity in children: Nuchal rigidity in children is a severely stiff neck in a child.
  • Polio: Dangerous virus now rare due to vaccination.
  • Poliomyelitis: Dangerous virus now rare due to vaccination.
  • Polymyalgia rheumatica: A condition characterized by muscle pain and stiffness, fatigue and fever. It is often associated with giant-cell arteritis which is a related but more serious condition.
  • Primary amebic meningoencephalitis: A relatively rare but serious infectious disease caused by Naegleria fowleri which is a type of free-living amoeba that can be found in warm fresh water and damp soil. The incubation period is from a few days to a week.
  • Psittacosis: An infectious disease caused by Chlamydia psittaci and transmitted mainly by infected birds but also by some mammals.
  • Retropharyngeal abscess: The high mortality rate of retropharyngeal abscess is owing to its association with airway obstruction
  • Rheumatoid arthritis: An autoimmune inflammatory condition which primarily affects the joints
  • SAPHO syndrome: A rare disorder involving skin (acne, pustulosis), bone (hyperostosis, osteitis) and joint problems.
  • Sandfly fever: Viral infection from sandfly bites
  • Selected Encephalitides: Selected conditions which cause inflammation of the brain
  • Simian B virus infection: A type of herpesvirus which occurs in monkeys but can be transmitted to humans through bites or through contact with infected monkey tissue as in a laboratory situation. The virus infects the brain (encephalitis) and the surrounding membrane (meningitis).
  • Skeletal anomalies: Skeletal anomalies refers to deformities or malformations of the bones.
  • Spasmodic Torticollis: Recurrent sudden and single lateral movements of the neck.
  • Spinal conditions: Any condition that affects the spine
  • Spine symptoms: Symptoms affecting the spine
  • Spondylarthropathy: Refers to a family of related inflammatory disorders that affect the sacroiliac joints, the spine and, less commonly, peripheral joints.
  • Spondylosis: Spinal degeneration of the discs or spinal joints
  • Stiff neck in infants: Stiff neck in infants is an unusually rigidity in an infant's neck.
  • Stiffness: Reduced mobility or movement
  • Subarachnoid haemorrhage: A condition which is characterized by haemorrhage of blood into the subarachnoid space
  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage: subarachnoid hemorrhage is bleeding in the area between the brain and the thin tissues that cover the brain. This area is called the subarachnoid space
  • Syphilis: A sexually transmitted disease caused by a bacteria (Treponema pallidum). The condition is often asymptomatic in the early stages but one or more sores may be present in the early stages. Untreated syphilis usually results in remission of visible symptoms but further severe damage may occur to internal organs and other body tissues which can result in death.
  • Syphilitic aseptic meningitis: A chronic syphilis infection which affects the nervous system.
  • Syringomyelia, cervical lesion: A slowly-progressing neurological disorder characterized by a fulid-filled cavity in the spinal cord in the neck region.
  • Systemic Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis: Onset of JRA with fevers and systemic symptoms
  • Tetanus: A disease caused by chemicals which are produced by a bacterium (clostridium tetani) and are toxic to the nerves. The infection usually occurs when the bacteria enter the body through a deep wound - these bacteria are anaerobic and hence don't need oxygen to survive.
  • Tick-borne encephalitis: A viral infection (flavivirdae) of the central nervous system which is transmitted by ticks. Ticks usually feed on small rodents who are the main carriers of the virus. Transmission may also occur through the consumption of untreated milk. The incubation period is usually 1 to 2 weeks. The symptoms occur in two phases: the first involves symptoms of a general viral illness (fever, headache, nausea, aching muscles) followed by a period of remission and then central nervous system inflammation such as meningitis. However, many patients only suffer the first phase of the disease.
  • Togaviridae disease: Infection with any of a number of togaviridae viruses which can caused conditions such as Equine encephalitis, Ross River virus and Rubella virus. Symptoms are determined by the type of virus involved. Togaviridae are arboviruses and are transmitted by arthropods.
  • Torticollis: Twisted neck
  • Tuberculous meningitis: Tuberculous meningitis is an infection of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord caused by Koch's bacillus.
  • Typhus: A general name for various arthropod-borne rickettsial infections
  • Waterhouse-Friederichsen syndrome: A rare syndrome that occurs as complication of septicemia (often due to meningococcal or pneumococcal infection) and involves blood coagulation in blood vessels, adrenal gland hemorrhages and ultimately kidney failure.
  • West Nile fever: Mosquito-borne infectious virus.
  • West nile encephalitis: A virus that is of the Flavivirus genus that causes the condition West Nile encephalitis
  • Western equine encephalitis: An infectious disease caused by an arbovirus (Alphavirus - Togaviraidae) and transmitted by infected mosquitoes. The infection primarily attacks that central nervous system and severity can range from asymptomatic to severe complications and even death in rare cases.
  • Western/Eastern/California encephalitis: A mosquito born virus transmitted to humans and sometimes horses.
  • Whiplash: Neck injury often from a car accident.
  • Wry neck: Twisted neck

Conditions listing medical symptoms: Stiff neck:

The following list of conditions have 'Stiff neck' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.

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Last revision: Nov 21, 2003

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