Thursday, January 21, 2010

Scientific American MIND Article on PANDAS

There is an article in Scientific American MIND about how strep can cause O.C.D., tics and Tourette's syndrome. It is called "From Throat to Mind: Strep Today, Anxiety Later." Parents have noticed a connection between a strep infection and obsessive symptoms for years and the science is starting to catch up with them. A pediatrician at the National Institute of Health noticed children who became obsessive compulsive overnight in the 1980's and found that after the strep infection had disappeared, they still had high strep antibodies in their blood. Susan Swedo, the pediatrician who noticed the connection, called the illness PANDAS "pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with strep." The science is now catching up to Dr. Swedo as they have now found the strep antibodies cause repetitive movements in mice. And with this article in Scientific American MIND, the once alternative diagnosis is gaining some mainstream attention.