Atlanta Center for Medical Research

101 on Tourette Syndrome

Atlanta Center for Medical Research Resource Blog

Tourette Syndrome first appears in children ages three through nine. It might begin as a child not being able to control the noises they make, or maybe this person has a habit of blinking their eyes or shrugging their shoulders.

It’s not uncommon to encounter someone who has Tourette Syndrome, no matter how the symptoms show themselves. In fact, there are about 200,000 cases of Tourette Syndrome per year in the United States.

But what exactly is this neurological disorder? And how does it affect our loved ones or people we know? Keep reading below to learn more about Tourette Syndrome.

What is Tourette Syndrome?

Tourette syndrome is a neurological disorder that causes tics, which are described as repetitive and involuntary movements. It generally shows up in children between the ages of two and 15, but it will remain with that person for the rest of their lives.

What Causes Tourette Syndrome?

Unfortunately, the exact reason why a person develops Tourette Syndrome isn’t known. However, there are many speculations and ideas.

Scientists have discovered the two most common risk factors include family history and gender. Males are about three to four times more likely to have Tourette Syndrome, and those who have family members with this disease are more at risk for it.

What are the Symptoms?

Tics are the most common symptom of Tourette Syndrome. They are divided into two different groups, simple and complex.

Simple Tics

Simple tics are brief and only involve a few muscle groups. Some examples include:

  • Blinking.
  • Jerking your head.
  • Shrugging.
  • Twitching your nose or mouth.
  • Eye darting.
  • Coughing.
  • Grunting.
  • Throat clearing.
  • Barking.

Complex Tics

Complex tics are patterns of movement that use multiple muscle groups.

  • Touching things.
  • Stepping a certain way.
  • Gestures.
  • Bending and twisting.
  • Repeating phrases.
  • Copying people.
  • Obscene or vulgar things, such as certain gestures or phrases.

What is the Treatment for Tourette Syndrome?

While there is currently no cure, there are several options for the treatment and management of Tourette Syndrome. The most common are as followed:

  • Medications.
  • Therapy options, such as behavioral therapy or psychotherapy.

The Atlanta Center for Medical Research was founded in 1982 by Dr. Robert A. Riesenberg and is now one of the largest and most respected medical research institutions in the country. ACMR’s 150,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art, open-source research facility is a game-changer for the medical research world. ACMR’s practices set the standard for medical research, facilitating the availability of safe and effective medicine to people everywhere.

If you’re interested in participating in a study about Tourette Syndrome to help us understand the disease better, click here to sign up today!

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