Sheffield Ataxia Centre (SAC)

The Sheffield Ataxia Centre (SAC) is based at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Sheffield. It is a national ataxia centre and one of only two Ataxia UK accredited centres in the UK that offers a highly specialised service for patients with ataxia.

We aim to provide:
  • Specialist expertise in the diagnosis and management of all ataxias
  • Signposting to the allied specialty services and local multidisciplinary teams
  • Research opportunities and offer links and collaboration with other ataxia centres and allied specialties
  • An MDT approach with input from the consultants and specialist nurses
The SAC team

The SAC was established in 1996 by Professor Hadjivassiliou and was accredited by Ataxia UK as a Centre of Excellence in 2007. The SAC has expanded since and now consists of two consultant neurologists with specialist expertise in the ataxias, two ataxia clinical nurse specialists and a GP with specialist interest (wSI).

Consultant Neurologists:

Professor Marios Hadjivassiliou and Dr Priya Darshni Shanmugarajah

Clinical Nurse Specialists:

Emma Foster and Suzanna Duty


Dr Karen O’Connor

Ataxia Clinics

Specialist ataxia clinics are held at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Sheffield led by Professor Hadjivassiliou and Dr Shanmugarajah. All new referrals are seen and assessed by Consultant Neurologists. Diagnostic investigations available are dependent on the clinical presentation and may include blood tests, genetic testing, MRI brain including spectroscopy of the cerebellum, neurophysiology assessments, muscle biopsy etc. The specialist nurses work alongside the Consultants and offer follow up support for patients by providing specialist advice and aiding with referrals onto local therapy services.


Patients interested in obtaining an opinion from the ataxia clinic should discuss with their doctor for a referral. Referrals are accepted from GPs (by NHS e-Referral Service), consultant neurologists and allied specialities throughout the UK.

Useful links

For more information, please refer to the Ataxia UK website (



Additional Information

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