Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Strep This article is adapted with permission from the Children’s and Adult Center for OCD and Anxiety. Founded and directed by Tamar Chansky, PhD, a leading expert on anxiety and OCD, the […]
PANDAS is often suspected when suddenly a child develops “neuropsychiatric” symptoms—such as obsessions and compulsions, involuntary tics, or mood changes—after a strep infection.
Defined in the mid-nineties by Dr. Susan Swedo, PANDAS stands for “pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with streptococcal infections.” The simple explanation of this long term is that a strep infection is causing an immune response that’s affecting the brain of a child, causing changes in behavior.
PANS (pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome) is a newer term that explains similar sudden symptoms caused by strep as well as other infections and non-infectious triggers. (PANDAS is a type of PANS.) Please see this article on PANS: “Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome”)
In additional to challenges a family faces in dealing with a child’s symptoms, PANS in general and PANDAS in particular is difficult because:
- Numerous types of triggers can cause similar symptoms
- Some in the medical community insist PANDAS does not exist.
- A controversy exists on how to diagnosis PANDAS and PANS.
- Many physicians are not familiar with the conditions, and it is difficult to find expert help.
- Research has not yet defined the best treatment approaches.
- Some of the recommended therapies are expensive and not covered by insurance.
The good news is that progress is being made, and children can be treated successfully.
We have addressed these issues in the sections below as well as in our e-book Your Child Has Changed. Should you Consider PANDAS? Let’s Talk
Related articles are shown below. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, you can search using the box at the upper right of the page or browse our forums. We host the largest international forum on PANS/PANDAS and related conditions.
Lyme disease and pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with streptococcal infections (PANDAS). An overview. Editor: We have an excellent forum on our website for Lyme disease and its overlap with symptoms of PANDAS, tics and Tourettes, […]
Luke’s determined mother wrote this account about PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal infections) for ACN Latitudes. The family’s name is withheld on request. Luke was a typical, very good, happy baby. He […]
By Ian’s mother, Nancy After our son had spent a few exceptionally stressful days in 1st grade, my husband and I noticed his little hands were red and raw. A quick phone consult with his […]
Research confirms that environmental factors are linked to the development of PANDAS. Genetically identical siblings were enrolled in the study. This is the abstract of recent research (technical): Termed pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with […]
Pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with Streptococcus (PANDAS) involves childhood-onset obsessive compulsive disorder and tic disorders. The symptoms resemble Sydenham chorea, primarily because they have an acute onset after a bout with group A Streptococcus […]
An advisory board member, Dr. Robbins answered this question received from a reader: “My son is almost 8 years old. He had a terrible fever and flu-like symptoms for a week and a half with […]
The National Institute of Mental Health describes current criteria for recognizing and diagnosing PANS (pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome) with the following explanation. Because it is often difficult to demonstrate the relationship between strep infections and OCD/tic symptoms […]
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