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Tornwaldt Cyst: A Cause of Neck Pain and Stiffness


Nasopharyngeal cysts are rare, small in size and asymptomatic, usually diagnosed as in incidental finding on MRI. Large cyst commonly presents with obstructive symptoms. Tornwaldt cysts occur in the midline bursa of the nasopharynx above the upper border of the superior constrictor muscle. They represent as a communication between notochord remnants and the pharyngeal endoderm. We report this case because of its presentation and size (2.5 × 2 cm). It was presented as intermittent cervical pain, stiffness and vertigo because of prevertebral cervical muscle spasm due to cyst and nasal symptoms were not predominant. Although rare, it should be kept as a differential diagnosis for cervical myelgia and stiffness.

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Correspondence to Nitish Baisakhiya.

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Baisakhiya, N., Deshmukh, P. & Pawar, V. Tornwaldt Cyst: A Cause of Neck Pain and Stiffness. Indian J Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 63, 147 (2011).

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  • Tornwaldt cyst
  • Neck stiffness
  • MRI
  • Marsupialization