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Sandifers Syndrome

What is Sandifers Syndrome?

Sandifers syndrome is commonly mistaken as seizures. Associated with gastro-oesophageal reflux and hernias, this syndrome has very few cases reported, but it is suspected this is partly because it is not recognised, and is more common than first thought. It is said to occur in less than 1% of children diagnosed with reflux.

Children diagnosed with Sandifers syndrome will quite often grow out of it by 18-36mths, unless the child has severe mental impairment or similar conditions, in which case the child may continue to have spasms into adolescence. Typically, Sandifers syndrome is not life threatening.

The episodes usually occur shortly after feeding, which can help give a clue to diagnosis of Sandifers syndrome rather than a seizure.

Signs and symptoms:

The child's head and neck may rotate to one side and the legs and feet to the other. Commonly the child will arch their back, and stretch out. The child will look stiff and may have periods crying, less commonly they may also go very quiet.

These episodes can last for 1-3 minutes.

Written by Tracey (Chairman)

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