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Getting the Family Tested for Strep.


brooke
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I am struggling to figure out how to get the WHOLE family, including the dog, tested for Strep. I know the classic Strep test, but how is it tested in the sinus? The intestines? The ears? To completely eliminate the possibility that one family member is setting off the PANDAS children, does every single angle need to be eliminated? What about the dog? The Vet told me that there is little that can be transmitted from animal to human and the reverse.

I am getting OCD thinking about this!

 

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Brooke

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Hi Brooke- I have been thinking about this as well. In fact I am taking myself to the minute clinic today for a swab, my ears feel a bit funny, and my kids are a little bit off. Two kids have had strep in Julia's class this week, with very low level symptoms.

 

I think the answer might be to have everyone cultured. Then have everyone blood tested for the strep titers. It is not foolproof, but probably the best we could do? I think someone mentioned- just treat the dog, the test costs more than the antibiotics.

 

I am kind of thinking, my two daughters are on daily zith anyway- why couldn't my dh and I just do a zpack or two for precaution? Where to get it though?

 

Eileen

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My thinking too! Wouldn't it be easier to just take the antibiotics and see? But, knowing my husband and big boys, they may say no unless they have a diagnosis. I feel like I am chasing my tail every day!

I wonder if my internist would be amenable? I also wonder which anti-biotics too? The same one as Evan takes?

 

I hope to see you soon!

 

Brooke

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Hi Brooke:

 

I ended up treating the dog, even though the test came back negative. I would advise to just treat....it is 5 days of amoxicillan.

 

We are in the process of doing the ASO titers on the rest of our family because my daughter seems to get stomach aches with strep and she has stomach aches right now and our son who has been healing nicely with IVIG is a little off.

 

We were in the infusion clinic getting my son's monthly IVIG yesterday and a woman was standing outside our room with her 2 daughters and she ways saying that they both "had raging cases of strep throat." I had a momentary panic attack!!

 

 

I say why not test everyone with the ASO titers?

 

Elizabeth

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I am struggling to figure out how to get the WHOLE family, including the dog, tested for Strep. I know the classic Strep test, but how is it tested in the sinus? The intestines? The ears? To completely eliminate the possibility that one family member is setting off the PANDAS children, does every single angle need to be eliminated? What about the dog? The Vet told me that there is little that can be transmitted from animal to human and the reverse.

I am getting OCD thinking about this!

 

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Brooke

Hi Brooke,

I think it is really hard to completely rule out strep for each family member... We did the swabs and found a couple of asymptomatic carriers. Our pediatrician, after hearing our story, agreed to put everyone on antibiotics, even the ones that had no symptoms and negative cultures. My husband and I also talked to our respective doctors and got on antibiotics. About the dog, Dr. Latimer said don't even bother testing, it's too expensive, just get the antibiotics. The vet did give us the same line you are getting, and we explained that the situation was serious enough we did not really care, we were putting our CHILDREN on antibiotics without proof of strep, the dog getting them too was the least of our concerns...

 

I did do a search, though, and I found an article documenting transmission of strep from dogs to the family (I can't remember now, but it was something where they had documented treating the whole family and not clearing, and then doing the whole family AND THE DOG, and clearing it.) So it seems to me we are going to such lenghts to erradicate this thing, even if there is "little" chance the dog might be the culprit, it's worth ruling it out.

 

Unfortunately, after all of that, my daughter (the one who had had strep in Nov and Dec) got impetigo on her face, and my PANDAS ds reacted to it (but he seems to be coming out of it now). She also had tummy aches and joint pains, throat cultures negative but we are waiting for the titer results...

Dr. Latimer referred us to an infectious disease specialist to see if she can help us figure out how to erradicate this thing. We probably won't get to it right now, since I'm due next week, but I'll share with you all any good tips I get there. (You are in the DC area, right? The doctor's name is Dr. Barbey-Morel at Georgetown University if you want to chek it out).

 

I know no one likes to prescribe antibiotics unnecesarily, but if you explain the situation and what is at stake, hopefully you will find a sympathetic doctor who will treat everyone. Believe me, I thought I didn't stand a chance of anyone prescribing for six children (I have seven, minus the PANDAS one who was already on abxs), but thank God the pediatrician got the picture and put them all on Omnicef. I was 8-months pregnant at that time, and after talking to my OB, he agreed to put me on it too. My husband just called his doctor and said there was strep in the house and he was not feeling well (a little bit of a fib), and they called it in for him. So if you plead your case, I think you stand a good chance of treating everyone simultaneously.

 

Isabel

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I had my whole family tested and everyone came back negative. We took my dog in for some problems (she's 16) and had some blood work done. We mentioned the strep/abx situation and my son's pandas dx. The vet was extremely interested and said my dog has really bad teeth and her blood came back high on certain numbers (I think sepsis?). We didn't test the dog for strep, she was doing blood work to check for cancers and heart problems. She was very willing to write an RX (Clindamycin) and wrote it up as 'therapy' 2 weeks on and 2 weeks off, then we start the cycle again for an open RX. I think our children are so sensitive to any viral/bacteria exposures, that it can't hurt to treat the dog. If anything, I feel better that it's one more thing I've done on my end :unsure:

 

So my son started Augmentin on the same day our dog started her abx... he's doing great, so I'm not sure if it's the Augmentin or my dog finally getting meds????

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Thank you all for the great advice! I will work on getting some bloodwork for the humans and talk to our Vet!

As much as she slobbers on us, and we her, it would not surprise me.

 

Boy, I had a bad case of impetigo as a young girl. It still have scars. Maybe it still lives in me? I need to talk to my OB because I had strep with different pregnancies, and cannot remember which ones now. Has this ever been looked at??

Brooke

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