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RAS in 3 yo?

My 3 year old hit his head today, not very hard in my opinion. Stood up, stumbled backwards, started to cry, then passed out, stopped breathing, started shaking then gagged and woke up. (I was holding him at this point) Looked very dazed, cried for a minute or so then was fine. He has done this once before and the ER said he was holding his breath. He wasnt. He was crying when it happened. It was a strange shrill cry.

I've searched the Internet and it led me here to reflex anoxic seizures. Does this sound like what he has? Does anyone else have a little one do this? It scares me so badly.



3 Replies

Sounds exactly like my son. Scary when it happens, but he will be fine!


Yes, this sounds typical of RAS. This website will be a relief to read, but also alarming at times. Triggers of RAS vary although generally the vagus nerve is oversensitive to sudden pain in all of us. It often runs through generations. My Grandmother, Mother, three daughters, one neice and I suffer with it.

Your son will cope with it better than you might imagine. It is his GP, teacher and relatives or friends you may experience problems with. Some over react and some dismiss the condition.


Hello, The most important thing to know is that although RAS is frightening to witness, it is not life threatening. We would suggest visiting your GP to discuss this with them. You can download our blackouts checklist which has been proved invaluable in getting a diagnosis from Please remember that we are here if you need us. You can get a more personalised reply by emailing


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