PANDAS Awareness Day - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

PANDAS Awareness Day

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A 12-year-old Billings girl suffers from a rare disorder called PANDAS, which stands for Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal infections.

Taelar Jamieson, 12, was diagnosed with bipolar disorder when she was six.

"About a month ago, Taylor started wiggling," said Echo Jamieson, Taelar's mother. "It was a really strange wiggle. It started with her hips and then moved to her feet and her hands and her mouth."

Echo Jamieson took her to a neurologist where she was diagnosed with PANDAs. Symptoms of the disorder include involuntary movements, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and motor or vocal tics.

"The last month for our family has been very, very difficult," Echo said. "She's a big outside kid and she loves to play outside and loves to ride her bike and her scooter and this disorder's taken that away from her. She can't balance well enough not even on her scooter, on a bike, and that's hard to see as a mom."

Echo says she cannot find a doctor in Montana who specializes in treating the disorder, so she's looking for doctors in Colorado and Utah. Taelar developed school anxiety as a result of the disorder as well, and is currently not in school. Her parents hope more families gain awareness of the disorder.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, PANDAS symptoms usually worsen after a strep infection.