Hyperekplexia: Report of a nonfamilial adult onset case associated with obstructive sleep apnea and abnormal brain nuclear tomography

M. S. Hochman, A. D. Chediak, J. A. Ziffer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations


We report the unique occurrence of hyperekplexia and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) in a 48-year-old male. Polysomnography and multiple sleep latency testing excluded cataplexy, which can be confused with startle attacks. A new imaging finding was a nuclear tomography abnormality in the left frontal lobe. We postulate that this finding may represent a functional cortical lesion of a descending pathway that normally inhibits the startle reflex. Serious complications of pharmacotherapy with clonazepam, the drug of choice for hyperekplexia, can be avoided by first evaluating for OSA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)280-283
Number of pages4
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 1994
Externally publishedYes



  • Hyperekplexia
  • Obstructive sleep apnea

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology

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