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Tristan Gammill, 7, was terrified of just about everything and no one could figure out why.


Normally a carefree, happy child, suddenly the Port Orchard second-grader thought she was dying. She wouldn’t jump into the pool at Great Wolf Lodge because she thought she was allergic to the water. Her pillow was wet with saliva because she was scared to swallow. She feared her throat was closing up. She refused to eat.


Tristan complained of a scratchy throat, but when tests failed to find a physical problem, she was diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and treated with counseling and an antidepressant.


It wasn’t until three years later, after her OCD symptoms flared up in January and she was unable to eat, sleep or go to school, that a psychologist suggested it might be PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections).




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