We’re PANDAS Network
We understand the shock and confusion you feel when your child is suffering and you don’t have answers. PANDAS Network is the leading national nonprofit organization for PANDAS/PANS/AE, and we’re dedicated to providing resources and support to families like yours who are living with this disorder.
Rebecca was an outgoing child whose personality changed dramatically after a strep infection. Receiving a PANDAS diagnosis gave her family hope. Hear her story of diagnosis, treatment and recovery from PANDAS.
Looking to stay current with advancements in the diagnosis and treatment of PANDAS/PANS? Check out our news and articles section to read the latest research and discover new information.
About PANDAS Network
What is PANDAS/PANS?
Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections (PANDAS) and Pediatric Acute-Onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome (PANS) occur after an infection, most commonly a strep infection; however, current research indicates that other bacterial, viral or environmental irritants can also cause persistent symptoms. A child’s immune system misdirects its response, and the reaction causes a process of inflammation to occur in the brain. The symptoms can vary from child to child, but the onset is sudden and dramatic.
Symptoms of PANDAS/PANS can range from mild to severe. From minor disruptions to complete incapacitation—both mentally and physically—symptoms of this disease affect the daily lives of affected children and those who care about them. While PANDAS/PANS usually starts in childhood (ages 4–10), symptoms can become chronic and continue into adulthood.
The best way to get a diagnosis is to meet with your pediatrician and be referred to a specialist. Diagnosis is made based on clinical evaluation, which is a collection of signs, symptoms, medical history and laboratory findings. Because PANDAS/PANS is a lesser-known disease, it can be challenging to get a diagnosis. Our resources can help.
With early treatment, research indicates that PANDAS/PANS can be cured or largely stopped for many children. However, left untreated, PANDAS/PANS can cause permanent issues, and inflammatory processes may continue to affect the central nervous system for several years. Treatment involves addressing both the physical and psychiatric symptoms of the condition, as well as ensuring any strep or other infection is taken care of with the appropriate medications.
PANDAS at a Glance
Learn more about this commonly misdiagnosed disorder.
1 : 200
Children affected by PANDAS/PANS*
4 – 10
Average age of onset
Of patients who had OCD and tics as primary symptoms
Of patients who reported infections of streptococcal pharyngitis
*These are estimates of lifetime prevalence. Based on U.S. research of OCD incidence and CDC 2013 national surveillance report of emergency hospitalizations of youth to age 21 with mental health issues related to OCD, Tourettes, & Acute Mood Disorders. (MMWR 2013;62(Suppl; May 15, 2013): 1-35. Percentage of cases based on 2018 PANDAS Network survey 1,400 families and multiple published clinical studies.
PANDAS Network is dedicated to improving the diagnosis and treatment of children with PANDAS. Armed with an impressive network of doctors, researchers and scientists, PANDAS Network builds public awareness, provides much-needed support to families and gathers data and resources to better inform parents and the medical community about PANDAS/PANS.
We know it can be challenging to locate scientifically sound, helpful and empathetic resources for those raising and treating children with PANDAS/PANS. Discover a wealth of resources about PANDAS/PANS vetted by our directors and scientific advisors.
Learn how to recognize symptoms, find providers and promote awareness. Since symptoms can vary from mild to acute, ask your clinician what medical interventions are available, and express urgency or seek emergency care if needed.
Clinicians play an integral part in the diagnosis, treatment and recovery of patients with PANDAS/PANS. Learn more about the latest information on diagnostic guidelines, critical research, effective treatment options and more.
If you’re an educator, caregiver, family member or a friend of someone with PANDAS/PANS, you can support research, raise awareness and provide assistance. See how to advocate for children living with this disorder and their families.
Latest Clinical Treatment Research
Research into understanding and treating PANDAS/PANS is growing every year. Learn more about the latest scientific discoveries and what they mean for patients and caregivers.
You are not alone in this fight. Other families affected by PANDAS/PANS have shared their personal stories to help raise awareness of PANDAS/PANS and encourage others whose lives are affected by these disorders.
Help us continue to support the children and adults living with PANDAS/PANS.