PANDAS Awareness is a vital factor to be considered in diagnosing childhood illness.

Dr. Nancy O’Hara will be presenting a Masterclass at the 2019 Mindd Forum on the rise of Pediatric Acute Neuropsychiatric Syndrome and Pediatric Autoimmune Neurological Disease Associated with Strep (PANDAS).

PANDAS Awareness – An Essential Part of Diagnosis

Dr. O’Hara’s lecture will provide insights into the potential infectious causes of sudden changes in the neuropsychiatric symptoms of children and the variety of symptoms that may be manifested.

Dr. Nancy O’Hara is a board certified Pediatrician specializing in children with special needs. Prior to her medical career, Dr. O’Hara taught children with autism, so she has an around-the-clock understanding of the needs of children with neurological disorders.

Since graduating with a medical degree, honors, and a master’s in public health, Dr. Nancy O’Hara has been an integrative clinical practitioner for almost 20 years. Since 1999 she has dedicated her functional medicine practice to the integrative and holistic care of children with chronic illness and neurodevelopmental disorders such as ADHD, PANDAS/PANS, OCD, Lyme and ASD.

Dr. O’Hara is a leader in the training of clinicians, both in the United States and abroad. Dr. O’Hara is a member of the Mindd Foundation Advisory Board.

What is PANDAS?

PANDAS is the acronym for Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcus. It is a set of neuropsychiatric symptoms that arise following a streptococcus infection, which most commonly presents as a sore throat.

Cause and symptoms of PANDAS:

PANDAS is considered autoimmune in nature as it’s caused when the immune system is trying to attack the streptococcal bacteria yet its defenses are misdirected and also attack neuronal cells. This can cause a whole range of behavioral abnormalities such as:

  • Hyperactivity and irritability
  • OCD
  • Nervous tic disorders
  • Changes in mood
  • Handwriting deterioration
  • Bed Wetting
  • Involuntary movements not in the child’s control
  • Constant blinking of the eyes
  • Separation anxiety
  • Grunting and repeatedly saying words
  • Loss of attention
  • Restrictive eating

The onset of any of these symptoms is generally quite sudden, happening nearly overnight or within a few days of a streptococcus infection.

Treatment for PANS / PANDAS

Pans / Pandas treatment

Dr. Nancy O’Hara will be thoroughly explaining the modes of intervention that are needed to treat childhood neurological disorders in her Masterclass lecture.

  1. Therapeutics: treating the symptoms, whether that be anxiety or OCD. She believes that the symptoms need to be treated via supportive interventions such as cognitive behavioral therapy, supplements, and medication, where absolutely required
  2. Antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory treatment to address infection
  3. Treating an immune disturbance and acknowledging autoimmune contributions

What practitioners will learn from Dr. Nancy O’Hara’s PANS and PANDAS Awareness Masterclass to apply to their own practice:

  • Learning to identify PANS and PANDAS and the associated symptoms
  • Identifying the link between other infectious triggers and neurological symptoms in children
  • Effective strategies to treat PANS and PANDAS, focusing on the causative infection and inflammation
  • Develop strategies for decision making about prophylaxis and treatment

Dr. Nancy O’Hara will be demonstrating her extensive clinical experience through a number of other Masterclasses at the 2019 Mindd Forum.

Be sure to attend Dr. Nancy O’Hara’s other Masterclass lectures below:

  • Chronic Immune System Activation/Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome
  • POTS & Dysautonomia
  • Lyme: It is in Australia
  • Trust Your Gut: Celiac & Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity
  • Making the Grade: ADHD without drugs

To see the full schedule of the 2019 Mindd Forum masterclasses, please see here.