Sen. Tom Fullerton, right, recently advanced Senate Bill 1684. | The Office of Sen. Tom Fullerton
Legislation to create an advisory council in the Illinois Department of Public Health on Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcal Infections (PANDAS) awareness and education recently advanced in the state Senate
Characterized by a sudden onset of symptoms associated with obsessive compulsive disorder and Tourette’s Syndrome after a child has had a strep infection. PANDAS is estimated to affect approximately 175,000 children and adolescents in Illinois. Adults also can get the disorder.
A potentially lifelong health issue, PANDAS is treated with cognitive behavioral therapy and anti-obsessional medications.
State Sen. Tom Cullerton, the bill's sponsor, said early detection is the key.
“No one wants to see young children suffer," he said. "It’s our duty to ensure our children don’t suffer. The faster we diagnose children affected by PANDAS, the quicker we can begin treatment.”
SB 1684 now moves on to the House for consideration.