Danish Registry study finds association of strep throat infection with increased risk for OCD and psychiatric disorders

Association of Streptococcal Throat Infection With Mental Disorders
Testing Key Aspects of the PANDAS Hypothesis in a Nationwide Study

Sonja Orlovska, MD; Claus Høstrup Vestergaard, MSc; Bodil Hammer Bech, PhD; Merete Nordentoft, DrMedSc; Mogens Vestergaard, PhD; Michael Eriksen Benros, PhD

JAMA Psychiatry. 2017;74(7):740-746. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2017.0995

In the July 2017 issue of the JAMA Psychiatry, researchers reported results from a study of over 1 million children and adolescents followed in the national registry of Denmark, and followed up to 17 years.  They found the approximately 60% of children who had streptococcal testing at some point.  Those who tested positive were more likely to have developed OCD or a tic disorder, than those without a strep test.  At a slightly lower level, they were also at increased risk for any psychiatric disorder.  Even those youth with a non-streptococcal throat infection were more likely to develop these disorders, but not as likely as those with strep positive tests.   These results support the presence of PANDAS internationally, and also potentially support the existence of PANS in Denmark. This study also adds to the voluminous useful data obtained from Scandanavian registries.