Sandifer’s Syndrome refers to dystonic posturing that occurs in response to episodes of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). The syndrome was named for neurologist Paul Sandifer.


Clinical features:

(1) The condition is usually seen in children but can occur in adults.

(2) Some patients have developmental delay.

(3) The patient has episodes of dystonic posturing.

(4) The movement disorder occurs during episodes of gastroesophageal reflux.

(5) Some patients have hiatal hernia.

(6) Control of the reflux often reduces the severity of the movement disorder.


Dystonic postures may take the form of:

(1) torticollis

(2) retrocollis

(3) opisthotonus


The patient may be misdiagnosed as having:

(1) a seizure disorder

(2) a behavioral disorder

(3) infantile spasm


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