Tourette’s Syndrome
Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Tourette’s syndrome is a neurological condition characterized by tics— involuntary, rapid, sudden movements or vocalizations that occur repeatedly in the same way. Dr. Ed Hill tells us more about this disorder in today’s 60 Second Housecall.

Tourette’s syndrome is a neurological disorder that usually begins in childhood. It causes a child to make tics, sounds or words and body movements that are beyond his or her control. Common tics are eye blinking and shoulder shrugging. Tics can get worse with stress.

People with Tourette’s may also have obsessive-compulsive disorder or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

The exact cause of Tourette’s is not known but parts of the brain that control a chemical called dopamine may be involved. The syndrome also may run in families.

A doctor can diagnose Tourette’s based on your child’s medical history and the kinds of symptoms your child presents.

Treatment for Tourette’s syndrome focuses on managing tics and helping your child and others cope with the tics. Most cases of Tourette’s are mild and will not require medical treatment. Educating yourself, your child and those around your child about Tourette’s will help your child thrive, as will creating a supportive home and school environment where tics are accepted and accommodated.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, I’m Dr. Ed Hill.