“Mental health disorders are the most common diseases of childhood.”
Neuropsychiatric disorders are those illnesses that have both neurological and psychiatric features. Millions of children and adolescents in the United States are impacted by a mental health condition. In fact, more than 17 million children in the U.S. currently have or have had a psychiatric disorder.* That’s more than all pediatric cases of cancer, diabetes and AIDS combined.
The most common psychiatric illnesses in children are anxiety disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and disruptive behavior, depression and bipolar mood disorders.* Other illnesses include obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), and eating disorders, along with other behavioral, developmental and movement disorders.
Nearly 50% of youth in the U.S. will have had a diagnosable mental illness at some point during childhood. Of those diagnosed, 22% will have a serious impairment.*
Infection-induced autoimmune disorders
The connection between autoimmune dysfunction and psychiatric illnesses has been investigated for many years. Recently, studies have shown that in some cases, there may be a biological basis for certain neuropsychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia and chronic depression. Other studies have found that infection-triggered autoimmune disorders may be the root cause of numerous neuropsychiatric symptoms.
Researchers believe a number of children and youth who have been diagnosed with a neuropsychiatric illness may actually suffer from an infection-induced autoimmune disorder, which triggers neurologic and psychiatric symptoms, such as OCD, tics, eating disorders and ADHD.
The Cunningham PanelTM, developed and offered exclusively through Moleculera Labs, is the first test of its kind in the world. The Panel is one, out of several to be introduced, which assists physicians in determining the likelihood that a patient’s neuropsychiatric symptoms are due to an infection-triggered autoimmune response, rather than a primary psychiatric disorder.
* Source: Child Mind Institute, Children’s Mental Health Report, 2015