Episode: PANDAS: The Mysterious Disease Stemming from Strep Throat

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PANDAS: The Mysterious Disease Stemming from Strep Throat
pandas-a-disease-developed-from-strepOne out of 200 children suffer from a devastating disease caused by strep throat.Dr. Susan Schulman, Pediatrician and PANDAS researcher, joins The Healthy Skeptic to discuss the devastating (yet temporary, if caught early) disorder, called PANDAS.  

What exactly is PANDAS? The acronym was first developed by Dr. Susan Swedo in 1998 when she described the condition as being a Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcus infection (PANDAS).  

According to the CDC, nearly two million children could be affected by some of the symptoms of this disorder. Because this is a relatively new disorder, PANDAS is not yet well understood and children are often misdiagnosed. Symptoms can escalate and a lifetime of physical and psychological trauma can continue.

What should a parent look for?  

A dramatic overnight change in personality and the following symptoms which are accompanied by a positive strep test: 

1. Anxiety
2. Depression
3. Irritability and aggression
4. Behavioral developmental regression
5. Deterioration of school performance and/or focus
6. Sensory or motor abnormalities (e.g.: tics, facial or fine motor agitation)
7. Somatic signs including sleep disturbances, enuresis or urinary frequency

Parents often report feeling like, “This is different child than the one I have raised.” It's important that testing is done early on and that the condition is treated promptly.

Listen in to learn more about PANDAS, so you can be on the lookout for it in someone you love.
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