Thursday, February 24 at 7:00am to 8:00am
PANS (Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome) and PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections) are infection-induced autoimmune conditions that disrupt a patient’s normal neurologic functioning, resulting in a sudden onset of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and/or motor tics. PANS and PANDAS can include a variety of other symptoms such as anxiety, irritability, hyperactivity, sleep disturbances, mood swings, eating disorders, and urinary problems. An estimated 1 in 200 individuals are impacted, with onset primarily occuring during childhood. Clinical presentation is different for every patient and symptoms can easily be mistaken for numerous common neurological disorders. Because of this alignment of symptomology, children with PANS/PANDAS are oftentimes misdiagnosed as having a psychiatric illness and may be treated solely with psychotropic medications, failing to solve the underlying problem. Symptoms can carry into adulthood and significantly impair the patient's quality of life if not managed appropriately. It is important that healthcare providers are competent with differential diagnosis and evidence-based guidelines to ensure PANS/PANDAS is identified early and treated accurately to improve patient outcomes and achieve remission.