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Pandas: Francis and James: stories of boys with suspended lives
BEFORE there were no problems and James, 12 years old, he was fine. But that all changed in a few moments for him and his family. Even Francesco, 10 and a half years, and a few ended up in the hospital because it could not go beyond the doors of the rooms of his home, and Alberto, 17 years, that one day he punched the mother without even realizing it. The true stories of children and teens suffering from a disease that is difficult to understand eda diagnose. It is Pandas , an acronym for Pediatric autoimmune europsychiatric disorder associated with streptococcal infection, which encloses a set of symptoms in the sphere of psychiatric onset (sudden tic, obsessive-compulsive disorder) in children are associated with an infection by streptococcus beta-hemolytic group A or other infections autoimmune. The lives of these children and this disease, on which the scientific community has not been a shared location that is dedicated to the book “Small suspended lives. The syndrome Pandas between scientific evidence and personal stories,” (Carocci editore) written by Cinthia Caruso, a journalist and head of communications of the Italian Society of pediatrics (Sip).m

The hypothesis on which is based the definition of this disease is that in some children affected by Streptococcus Beta-Hemolytic group A, it would trigger an immune reaction wrong for which antibodies instead of attacking the strep bacteria would attack the central nervous system (brain mostly). The causes of why this occurs are not known. The onset happens in a few days and is concomitant with a pharyngitis or the inflammation of the upper respiratory tract.
symptoms: tics and obsessions, The disease manifests itself with tics (blinking of eyes, movement of the hands, rotate the inch) or less associated with obsessive compulsive disorder and in some cases, to eating disorders, until the anorexia, and hyperactivity. “The concept of Pandas - says the author - it has evolved over the last few years and today more correctly we should talk about Pandas-Pans (Pediatric acute neuropsychiatric disorders), as it is the hypothesis that not only the streptococcal infections but also other infectious events may cause neuropsychiatric disorders. Were called in because several infectious agents such as herpes, chlamydia, mycoplasma”.
Disease 'orphan' of diagnosis and treatment there is No diagnostic test that helps identify the disease that is little known even among the same healthcare workers. Also, the symptoms resemble those of other diseases of the sphere, neuropsychiatric (e.g., Tourette Syndrome) and therefore it is more difficult to recognize it. “For this - it is underlined in the book - not a few children are directed towards care pathways and neuropsychiatric (drugs) that often they lead to nothing or, worse, these children are labeled and treated to the life as mentally ill”. In addition to a diagnostic test of the Pandas is an orphan also for large-scale studies is warranted to confirm the clinical features and this is the main obstacle to the recognition of the disease by the National Health System because it is not possible to estimate the incidence in the pediatric population.
The importance of stories In a disease so complicated, a point of view, important are the testimonies on which wheel the book opens by telling a story important to the life of Clare, the mother of James, an italo-american in the mid - ’80s he was working in Pasadena with a group of Nasa scientists. Followed the mission in the space probe Voyager 2, which for the first time reached and flew over Uranus. The task of Clare was to build algorithms to explore the planets. But the scientists discovered something unexpected: contrary to their predictions Uranus does not move around the sun like the other planets of the solar system, but it's doing strange somersaults.
chip away at the beliefs to understand the disease At the beginning suspect that there is an error in the algorithm, as they spend hours and days must, however, take note that to be wrong was their model of thinking. They had reasoned by analogy with the other planets of the solar system. And they were wrong. “This episode tells Cinthia Caruso - marks Clare's life because it makes them touch it with hand as it will crumble a scientific paradigm, a belief that no one had ever questioned”. Twenty-eight years later, thinking of the lesson of Uranus, Chiara saves his son from the drugs. When her child, till that moment normal, suddenly “impazzirà,” you are going against the beliefs of the doctors who had diagnosed a mental illness, he or she will discover the true pathology of his son, the Pandas-Pans.

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