PANS/PANDAS Smartphone Study

What is the study?

The purpose of this study is to track symptoms and treatments of PANS/PANDAS using a smartphone application over the course of three months. We hope that our study will increase awareness and deepen our understanding of PANS/PANDAS including its symptom trajectory and course; and responsiveness to treatment

What is PANS/PANDAS?

PANS (Pediatric Acute-Onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome) is a disorder diagnosed in pre-pubertal children that presents as an abrupt-onset of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and/or restrictive eating.

PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcus) presents as an abrupt-onset of OCD, restrictive eating, and/or tics in pre-pubertal children, and is specifically triggered by a strep infection.

In addition to the abrupt onset of OCD, restrictive eating, and/or tics, both PANS and PANDAS require the presence of at least two of the following areas of neuropsychiatric symptoms:

  • Anxiety (particularly separation anxiety)
  • Emotional lability and/or depression
  • Irritability, aggression and/or severely oppositional behaviors
  • Behavioral (developmental) regression
  • Deterioration in school performance (due to inattention, concentration difficulties, memory deficits, or others)
  • Sensory or motor abnormalities
  • Somatic symptoms (sleep disturbances, wetting accidents, urinary frequency)

Who can participate?

We are seeking English-speaking children and adolescents between the ages of 4-16 to participate in the study. All participants must meet the PANS/PANDAS criteria to be included in the research.

What will happen if I decide to participate?

This study includes 2 in-person study visits at the University of Minnesota Department of Psychiatry, as well as three months of at-home/remote participation.

  • Initial study visit: You and your child will be asked to complete several clinical interviews related to your child's PANS/PANDAS symptoms. After this visit, you will be asked to complete an online questionnaire at home with in 48-hours of the initial study visit.
  • Months 1-3: For 3 months, you and your child will be asked to (1) complete and online assessment of your child's symptoms weekly, and (2) track your child's symptoms and treatment(s), 3 times/week via smartphone application. The online assessment and smartphone tracking are each expected to take between 5-10 minutes.
  • Final study visit: After three months of at-home/remote participation, you and your child will be asked to complete a final assessment in the Department of Psychiatry.

Compensation: You and your child will each be compensated a $25 Target gift card for your participation. Additionally, parking costs will be covered by the research team for the initial and final study visits.

Please contact study coordinator Elizabeth Harris at 612-625-1632 or harr1317@umn.edu for more information about the study or to enroll.

Study team

Principal Investigator (PI):
Study Coordinator: