Pans/Pandas Awareness Day
October 9, 2017 marks the first PANDAS/PANS awareness day for the state of Arkansas. House bill HR 1030 was established February 21, 2017. Multiple states have officially proclaimed this a day of awareness and acknowledged the need for educating the public and medical community about these autoimmune disorders. Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcal (PANDAS) is a serious, complex autoimmune disorder that can affect people, (primarily children) when a strep infection triggers a misdirected immune response, resulting in inflammation of the brain. The disorder is characterized by a sudden onset of neuropsychiatric disorders, including severe anxiety, depression, OCD, behavioral and learning regression, facial tics and more. If strep cannot be linked to the onset of symptoms, PANS (Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndromes) caused by a different infection should be considered.
According to the CDC, It is estimated that 13-20 percent of children living in the United States experience a mental disorder in a given year.” (www.cdc.gov/features/childrensmentalhealth) It is also documented that 1 in 200 children are affected with PANDAS/PANS. Finding the root cause for these symptoms is imperative. If the onset is a result of PANDAS/PANS, a person can possibly be saved from a lifetime of suffering.
The effects of this horrible disorder became very evident, in Central Arkansas and across the PANDAS/PANS community, after the death of Max, a 13 year old Benton boy on December 24th 2016. The Saline Health Foundation became involved with a mission; that awareness is spread, education becomes readily available, people are able to get proper diagnosis and treatment become more accessible. “We will do all we can to ensure that another family does not lose a loved one because of this very cruel disease” said Matt Brumley, Director of Saline Health Foundation. “It is our hope that we have hundreds of people come together October 9th Brumley said.
Please join us in the State Capitol Rotunda, 12:45 October 9, 2017 as we celebrate awareness for the hope of our children. We will gather together and hear personal testimonies from a couple of families who have been affected. We will also share what you can do in helping us overcome the battle in front of us.