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Showing most liked content since 03/29/2013 in all areas

  1. 3 points
    Hi, and welcome! My DS has a similar story to your DD's . . . OCD at age 6, started CBT and some ERP and it backed off for a while, OCD returned with a vengeance at age 8 and this time added low-dose SSRI to therapy which worked for several years, and then at age 12 became so dysfunctional no SSRI worked, wouldn't participate in therapy, etc. That's when we were finally able to get a PANDAs diagnosis and treatment (antibiotics). In our case, because his initial response to antibiotics was so positive, we were able to convince our doctor to continue to renew them, and in the end, he was on them for nearly 2 years, with improvements all along the way. We saw Dr. K. for a consultation and he recommended IVIG for us, also; Dr. K. believes that IVIG is the only true way to "reset" the immune system and stop the autoimmune onslaught behind the anxiety/OCD, and the NIMH (Dr. Swedo) has agreed with him. As you've probably seen here, there are those here who've had positive results with IVIG, and some who've not had palpable or lasting impacts, and I don't think anyone fully understands why the differences. In our case, our DS was responding so well to abx, we decided we'd hold off on IVIG until and unless his improvements ceased or we couldn't get them abx anymore. Not only did the IVIG seem like a more dramatic step, our DS didn't have any immune deficiencies, so we knew our insurance would not cover the treatment. A couple of things you noted I wanted to respond to, specifically: 1) as your DD has had breathing/sinus issues, have you ever had her sinus' "scoped"? There are a couple of families here on the forum who's sinus testing disclosed some cysts in the sinuses that were basically pockets of infection, more or less hanging out there and driving an unrelenting immune response which also reached the brain. Upon having the cysts removed, followed by a round of antibiotics, the child's behavior improved dramatically. We never went to the scoping for our DS, but he, too, had had sinus and breathing issues since he was 2 or 3. We think maybe the long course of abx was necessary in his case because of some infection hanging out in those sinuses that took a while to eliminate non-surgically, as his breathing and sinus issues improved along with his behavior symptoms, and he's not had any significant issues since PANDAs treatment. 2) You mention seeking Lyme testing. I would encourage you to address that before you decide upon IVIG as there have been some reports here by families that IVIG was ineffective or even problematic for them because their child had underlying Lyme and/or co-infections that they didn't know about before moving forward with IVIG. 3) While I do believe that you need to find appropriate medical treatment and perhaps SSRIs will not ever be a successful piece of your DD's health, my DS has continued to benefit from a low-dose SSRI for some occasional, lingering anxiety periods, and there have been other kids here for whom low-dose SSRI's have been helpful in conjunction with other tools. You might consider some genetic testing such as Genomind which focuses on genetic makeup and which psychiatric medications are likely to be effective or not based on one's genetics. And 3), you have a concern about "irreversible brain damage." As the parent of a kid who, like yours, went for many years unsuccessfully treated for an autoimmune response (strep was our culprit), I will tell you that I don't see any brain "damage," per se, but I do believe that my DS's "wiring" today was informed by his experiences all those years. He is now a healthy and happy 20-year-old, a scholarship student living away at college and growing mentally and emotionally on a daily basis. But he is still prone to some anxiety during stressful times, and his go-to response to that anxiety are some OCD behaviors. At this time, the anxiety and OCD are under control and so minor/sub-clinical that if you didn't know him extremely well, you'd have no idea. So, "damage"? I don't think so. But a part of who he is? Maybe. Perhaps he'll continue to mature and evolve past even these remaining behaviors as his mind and body health stay with him. Or he might always have these "tendencies" which, in addition to making him anxious at times, also make him conscientious, sensitive and empathetic toward others and their eccentricities. Hang in there, and all the best! All is NOT lost!
  2. 2 points
    The obvious approach is to say exactly what you wrote: that you believe your son may be having neurological inflammation because of an autoimmune response based on a list of symptoms that you have documented. Then see what tests he suggests and allow him to make the diagnosis. Remember that there is an art and science to using the terminology that will ensure that your child gets the treatment needed that will also be covered by insurance. I was careful to allow each doctor to use "PANDAS" before I did. If they did not, then I didn't either. After all, a bruise is also called a contusion ;-).
  3. 2 points
    dreamingpanda

    Recovery Time

    I agree that everyone is different. So much depends on how old a person is, how severe, how long it's been untreated, and what kind of treatment they get. And sometimes, there seems to be no rhyme or reason to how fast or slow one person recovers. In my experience, I was untreated for eight years, had my first IVIG at 19, and after another IVIG and a tonsillectomy, I'd say I made a full recovery over a year later. I've since relapsed twice, but that's because I caught Lyme disease, which complicates things a great deal. From what I've observed in my own journey, it's very hard to give an accurate percentage of recovery, or to figure out when I've gotten all the way back to myself. I don't know if I've ever been 100% symptom-free since I became ill eleven years ago. I've stopped trying to assign a number to where I am in recovery, and I just gauge whether or not I'm able to live my life as I wish. Ultimately, I think that's the best a lot of us can do. For me, there's never been a day or even a month when I've suddenly realized everything was back to how it was before. It usually seems to be a painfully slow process where I shed symptoms and regain my "self" so slowly that I might not even realize it's happening. It's easy to over-analyze ever day, every tic, and every little compulsion, but the overall trajectory is what's most important. There will be ups and downs and flares for pretty much everyone, but hopefully, the underlying trend is towards the positive. At my age and given how long this went untreated, it's possible I'll always have some minor symptoms. But even if this is so, thanks to treatment, PANS hasn't stopped me from doing anything I've wanted to accomplish in my life. So hang in there! You might be in this for the long haul, and there may be a lot of ups and downs, but yes, your daughter can and will get better with the right treatment.
  4. 2 points
    If the antibiotic schedule is a treatment for Lyme Disease, then minocycline or doxycycline are effective at reducing bacteria counts however they also create a significant amount of round-body forms or "persisters". The medical community splits here with the IDSA camp saying these persisters are not a risk, and the ILADS camp saying these persisters are the cause of ongoing disease. You will need to make a decision and choose a side. If you think the persisters are a risk, ask your doctor about using a therapy that incorporates antibiotics known to eliminate round-body forms of borrelia, such as Flagyl. Here are some links that may be helpful: http://columbia-lyme.org/patients/ld_chronic.html https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4373819/
  5. 2 points
    There are a couple of possible factors (if not infection or immune dysfunction based): 1. SSRI "poop-out" is real, unfortunately; you can find first-person accounts of it in forums and discussion groups all over the world, and I've seen it first hand in family members. That said, just anecdotally, I think some are more prone to it than others. Though the science is still not fully researched or documented, it seems to have something to do with the particular receptors that each SSRI affects; pretty much every SSRI has a different formulation that impacts different receptor sites (whether dopamine, serotonin, 5H-T, norepinephrine transporter receptors, for instance), even though there's typically some crossover among all of them. At any rate, if the receptor sites become unresponsive, which they can do, then the med doesn't work as well. Weight typically has little to do with SSRI dosage. 2. We had a psych (and she's actually somewhat versed in PANDAS/PANS and certainly doesn't dismiss it) note for us that a component of our DS's increased challenges at an older age, as compared to when he was younger, were a factor of the expanding "gap" between what were age-appropriate expectations for behavior and what his jumbled brain could manage for him at the time. It's one thing for a 3 or 4 year old to melt down in public, but when a 12, 14 or even 18 year old can't manage all the stimuli coming in and melts down, it's a whole different animal! So, even if nothing dramatic changes in terms of environment or demands, just the fact that she's getting older and so society, friends, outside world and maybe even you tend to expect more "self-management" of her, that's a kind of pressure all on its own that might result in increased anxiety. Sorry you're continuing to go through this; we've been there (a protracted "story"), so I know how frustrating and demoralizing it can be at points. All I can say is that, in your shoes, I would probably first try to rule out any physical (infection or immune) component to the decline, and once having done that, maybe look into the mental health options available to try and improve the quality of your DD's life (and yours by extension). I don't know if you've considered it, but there are now the genetic testing options available (like Genomind) that hone in on genetics and any mutations that may interfere with the effectiveness of various medications, including SSRIs. That might be one route to pursue, particularly if the others aren't fruitful. All the best to you.
  6. 2 points
    MomWithOCDSon

    Help with meltdowns/mood lability

    My son was older when PANDAs struck him (12), but we still saw lots of meltdowns, mood swings and generally age-inappropriate behavior. I don't know about these being the result of a herx. I attribute my DS's behavior during that period to just feeling overwhelmingly anxious and out of control...his executive functioning was basically nil, so all of the things that had previously come naturally to him and he could do well and with joy, were no longer available to him. That was incredibly distressing and frustrating, so his emotions were constantly taking over and he'd melt into a puddle of dysfunction. I might suggest the following: Eliminate all but the essential activities for a while so that he's not over-stimulated and/or expected to "handle himself" in as many stressful situations, even if they all were fine before; Try using anti-inflammatory and/or calming meds and/or supplements to help his brain "settle down" a little while the abx do their thing (ibuprofen, valerian root, etc.); To the extent possible, build lots of "breaks" into his day to allow him to rest and regroup as managing oneself under this level of stress is very tiring, emotionally, mentally and physically, so he's probably in need of some quiet breaks during which he's not expected to play with others, engage with others, etc.; While you make the preceding accommodations, don't entirely forego your family routine, age-appropriate expectations, etc. Decide what non-negotiables you'll continue to enforce so that he knows there is still structure, support and boundaries even while he heals. It will help him feel safe, secure and less out-of-control in the end. All the best to you, and good luck!
  7. 2 points
    I totally agree with bobh. My kids were lucky to find doctor L in Washington DC to diagnose them both as having PANDAS (very different symptoms though) and when she put both of them on steroids there was an immediate difference. That noted, if you noticed a difference in your symptoms your OCD and other symptoms it would appear to be biologically based... My kids also had very similar symptoms that you mention. We have never done the Cunningham panel but have worked with first D. L with antiobiotics and then moved on to a wonderful naturopathic doctor, using supplements, Low dose naltrexone, and other things to bring both kids symptoms way down. We also found borrelia Lyme in both kids and mycoplasma with my daughter and have worked with those areas too. My daughter also had her tonsils and adenoids out and it also helped significantly. She had a number of OCD issues that are still there but not nearly as significant as they used to be. She still has the sensory issues but her handwashing has almost totally gone. My kids were diagnosed six years ago and are still have their moments but it is under control and they are able to function quite well despite some very bad years. I am not sure where you are from or your language, but there are many support groups on Facebook in different countries and states in the US. I am currently in Europe if you need help there. You are a strong man and you will overcome this. There are lots of people out there to support you like on this forum. We all want to help.
  8. 2 points
    Hey, I'm putting this article here b/c when I've searched for it recently it's been behind a paywall...but today it's not. So now it's here for safe keeping in case it becomes inaccessible again. Antibiotics have a role in PANS even with no infection Publish date: February 9, 2017 By: M. Alexander Otto Clinical Psychiatry News EXPERT ANALYSIS FROM THE PSYCHOPHARMACOLOGY UPDATE INSTITUTE SAN FRANCISCO – Antibiotics might help in pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome (PANS) even if there’s no apparent infection, according to Kiki Chang, MD, director of PANS research at Stanford (Calif.) University. first step at Stanford is to look for an active infection, and knock it out with antibiotics. Dr. Chang has seen remarkable turnarounds in some of those cases, but even if there’s no infection, “we still do use antibiotics.” There are positive data, “although not a lot,” indicating that they can help. Some kids even seem to need to be on long-term antibiotics, and flair if taken off long after infections should have been cleared. Dr. Kiki Chang “We don’t know what’s going on. We try to stop antibiotics if we can; if patients relapse, we think the benefit [of ongoing treatment] outweighs the risks. Some kids just have to be on antibiotics for a long time, and that’s an issue.” Perhaps it has something to do with the anti-inflammatory properties of antibiotics like azithromycin and amoxicillin, or there might be a lingering infection, he said at a psychopharmacology update held by the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. PANS is a recently coined term for the sudden onset of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) within a few days of an infection, metabolic disturbance, or other inflammatory insult. Anxiety, mood problems, and tics are common. There might be severe food restriction – only eating white foods, for instance – that are not related to body image. PANS broadened the concept of pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with streptococcal infections (PANDAS), which was first described in 1998, although it’s been known for generations that acute streptococcus infections can lead to abrupt psychiatric symptoms. PANS is the topic of ongoing investigation, and Dr. Chang and many others are working to define the syndrome and its treatment, and trying especially to determine how PANS differs from typical OCD and other problems with more insidious onset. The idea is that inflammation in the patient’s brain, whatever the source, triggers an OCD mechanism in susceptible patients. As a concept, “we believe it’s true,” he said. For now, it’s best to refer suspected cases to one of several academic PANS programs in the United States, as diagnosis and treatment isn’t ready for general practice, he said. If more than antibiotics are needed, Stanford considers targeting inflammation. Some children respond to easy options such as ibuprofen. Dr. Chang has seen some helped with prednisone, but treatment is tricky. There might be an occult infection, and PANS can present with psychiatric issues that prednisone can make worse, including depression and mania. Intravenous immunoglobulin is another of the many options, “but we really need about four treatments” to see if it helps. Cognitive behavioral therapy and family support also helps. As for psychotropic medication, “we often use them, but they rarely take away the acute symptoms,” and PANS children seem especially sensitive to side effects. “I’ve seen many of them become manic on SSRIs. I’ve seen some of them have very strong [extrapyramidal symptoms] with atypical antipsychotics. You have to be very careful; we don’t have any good studies” of psychiatric drugs in this population, he said. At the moment, PANS seems to be more common in boys than girls, and most patients have a relapsing/remitting course and a family history of autoimmune disease. Suicidal and homicidal ideation can be part of the condition. Dr. Chang believes PANS could be part of the overall increase in autoimmune disease and psychiatric disorders in children over the past few decades. “We have more kids who have special needs than ever before,” large, objective increases in bipolar, autism, and other psychiatric problems, as well as increases in psoriasis, nut allergies, and other autoimmune issues. “What causes it is harder to say, but there has been a change for sure in kids and their immune system development that does affect the brain, and has probably led to more neuropsychiatric disturbances,” he said. “No one talks about it. Everyone thinks that it’s some sort of pharmaceutical industry conspiracy” to sell more drugs by increasing scrutiny of children. “I think it’s caused by something in the environment interacting with genetics,” whether it’s infections, toxins, or something else. “We don’t know. Any kind of inflammation can be a trigger” and “we know inflammation” is key to “many psychiatric symptoms. I do think there’s something going on with kids over the last 30 years,” he said. Dr. Chang is a consultant for and/or has received research support from Bristol-Myers Squibb, Lilly, Merck, GlaxoSmithKline, and other companies. aotto@frontlinemedcom.com
  9. 2 points
    jan251

    IVIG for untreated PANDAS

    Skin picking, trichotillomania, is indeed a common type of compulsion/OCD. Even if it's a tic, tics are likewise symptoms of PANS/PANDAS.
  10. 2 points
    My heart breaks to read this but I am also encouraged by a parent that is striving for healing and being that wonderful fighting advocate that these poor kids so very much need. I have two children. Both with difficult stories. Very similar to yours. Firstly, I will say there was no single organic reason for their fall . Everyone is different so for some its treat the lyme of mold and bingo the child heals. My oldest has the marks and we were told too that they were stretch marks . He is tired all the time, easily overwhelmed and tics. Our youngest was home-bound for years. What has worked for us? 1. Clean eating. They both have detox issues so every time we treated for Bartinella/Lyme they would fall apart on even the smallest herb or anti B. UHG So we could not do much. When they were at their worst they were very sensitive to yeast and Molds but as they healed Mold became less an issue. NOW Most foods they eat are organic, lots of veggies and fruits, grass fed beef and chix along with cold water fish 2x a week (good for brain inflammation) We removed Gluten/dairy/soy. The immunologist (conventional from big children's hospital) believes that certain kids suffer from innate immune responses from certain trigger foods and these three she found to cause inflammation effecting brain the most. Huge difference for my youngest especially. He is also supper super thin and she has him on amino acid plant based or bone broth based protein shakes between meals and we use high fat organic coconut milk in can. His mind began to clear in a few months just by cleaning up diet. 2. Having Bowel movements 2x a day helped their poor detox for sure. Increased pure water and actually used fiber powder for a while until they both go now 2x a day. 3. Good counseling because even if its caused by something outside of themselves the chemistry is still off and the OCD and anxieties/depression are there and by learning how to deal with these emotions better help's them navigate thru these horrible waters. As we treated our youngest son for Bart all his emotional issues (agoraphobia, Bi polar, OCD) disappeared. WE used low low low dose SSRI and nutritional lithium as well. WE continue to treat yeast, bart with herbs and cycles of 5 day Tinizidol for gut bacteria. Both are NOW able to handle the treatment bc their bodies are functioning better. Diet was a huge life style change and took me 3 years to finally own it and implement it. Best thing we ever did. Not the cure ALL but huge piece of the puzzle for us. Now not everything that comes our way causes them both to fall apart and start over. They are beginning to strengthen the terrain so that the genetic predispositions don't derail them at every turn. Keep searching, praying and never give up!!!
  11. 2 points
    castrum

    question for juwayriyah

    Hi Nrr Here is a site where you can buy Clerodendrum Inermis in USA http://www.kartuz.com/p/90153/Volkameria+inermis.html I`ll wait it help you.
  12. 2 points
    Clearly, you'd want to look for infections. I'd set up an appt with your pandas doc (or whoever; really, any doc who will do it) to run some bloodwork ASAP, both for infections and immune system stuff, IgG levels and so forth. In the meantime, I'd haul the kid off to the nearest urgent care for a swab and throat culture today. It seems to me that this sort of situation is to be expected with PANS/PANDAS.
  13. 2 points
  14. 2 points
    nrr

    question for juwayriyah

    Does anybody have any advice on how to get this plant in the US and also, if it will grow on the east coast where we sometimes have long winters. Will it grow indoors?
  15. 2 points
    gpookie

    LD vs HD IVIG

    We don't know. We just stopped again for the summer. We will check levels in August to see if levels held. They held in the normal rangenlast summer, but had fallen within the normal range. My kids have hypogammaglobulinemia, possible CVID, not confirmed CVID.
  16. 2 points
    gpookie

    LD vs HD IVIG

    We did HD on both boys in 20014. The worst PANDAS symptoms dissappeared over night and never came back. After 6 or so months, they kept getting sick with mild flaring and also flaring on exposure. ID specialist and immunologist discovered hypogammaglobulinemia, possible CVID. LD monthly (.5g/kg for 6 months, stop 3 then 6 more months) worked wonders. No more flares, even when ill and on exposure. LD was the best thing.
  17. 2 points
    jan251

    NEW PANS TREATMENT GUIDELINES

    Table and Text Excerpt from: “Treatment of Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome (PANS)” SE Swedo (NIMH), J Frankovich (Stanford), TK Murphy (Univ S Florida) In press, Journal of Child & Adolescent Psychopharmacology https://www.pandasppn.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/PANS-Clinical-Care-Standards-for-Use-of-IVIG.pdf
  18. 2 points
    I want to make sure everyone gets this link to the Discover article "Hidden Invaders" on PANDAS. Someone posted about the article on this forum and now Discover has posted it online so it's easy to share. http://discovermagazine.com/2017/april-2017/hidden-invaders#.WQsk069P1mI.email


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