Links for Keyword: Tourettes

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Jud Esty-Kendall Josh Hanagarne, 39, and his son Max, 9, recently sat down at StoryCorps to talk about Tourette's syndrome. Josh has dealt with Tourette's since he was Max's age and while Max hasn't been officially diagnosed, he has started to show symptoms, too. Courtesy of StoryCorps Josh Hanagarne is a dad, a librarian and an author, who also has an extreme form of Tourette's syndrome. But he doesn't let it and his tics — his involuntary movements and sounds — stop him from living his life. He says he actually chose to work in a library because it was the quietest place he knew of. Josh first started showing symptoms of Tourette's syndrome when he was in elementary school, about the same age that his son Max is now. Not everyone with Tourette's syndrome has the same tics. Max, 9, describes his dad's as "you hitting yourself and making a lot of noise." "You've seen me hit myself hard enough to almost knock myself out," Josh, 39, says. "I also do all of the blinking and the face things and the little ahem noises." Josh's form of Tourette's is so extreme that his tics have been severe enough that they've put him in the hospital before. "To me, it feels like when you have that urge to sneeze so bad that you just feel like you'll just go insane if you don't let the sneeze out," Josh says. But he says that's not the most difficult part of living with Tourette's. "The hardest thing I do every day is decide to go outside or not, because I know when I walk into a group of strangers, I will yell or I will do something weird and they will all look at me," Josh says. © 2017 npr

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 24020 - Posted: 09.01.2017

Researchers have identified structural changes in two genes that increase the risk of developing Tourette syndrome, a neurological disorder characterized by involuntary motor and vocal tics. The study, published in the journal Neuron, was supported by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the National Institutes of Health. “Our study is the tip of the iceberg in understanding the complex biological mechanisms underlying this disorder. With recent advancements in genetic research, we are at the cusp of identifying many genes involved in Tourette syndrome,” said Jeremiah Scharf, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of neurology and psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, and co-corresponding author of the study. The research was part of an international collaboration co-led by Dr. Scharf; Giovanni Coppola, M.D., professor of psychiatry and neurology at the University of California, Los Angeles; Carol Mathews, M.D., professor of psychiatry at the University of Florida in Gainesville; and Peristera Paschou, Ph.D., associate professor in the department of biological sciences at Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana. The scientific team conducted genetic analyses on 2,434 individuals with Tourette syndrome and compared them to 4,093 controls, focusing on copy number variants, changes in the genetic code resulting in deletions or duplications in sections of genes. Their results determined that deletions in the NRXN1 gene or duplications in the CNTN6 gene were each associated with an increased risk of Tourette syndrome. In the study, approximately 1 in 100 people with Tourette syndrome carried one of those genetic variants.

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 23761 - Posted: 06.22.2017

By Jia Naqvi An experimental technique reduces the tics, or involuntary movements and vocal outbursts, associated with severe Tourette's syndrome in young adults, a study published Friday found. The surgical technique, called thalamic deep brain stimulation (DBS), sends electrical impulses to a specific area of the brain that reduces the tics, according to the study published in the Journal of Neurosurgery. The finding adds to the growing body of evidence about the safety and effectiveness of deep brain stimulation, which might eventually lead the Food and Drug Administration to approve the treatment for Tourette's syndrome, according to the researchers. “Our study shows that deep brain stimulation is a safe, effective treatment for young adults with severe Tourette syndrome that cannot be managed with current therapies,” said Alon Mogilner, an associate professor in the departments of neurosurgery and anesthesiology at New York University Langone and director of its Center for Neuromodulation, in a news release. “This treatment has the potential to improve the quality of life for patients who are debilitated through their teenage years and young adulthood.” Tourette's syndrome, a type of neurological disorder, according to various studies afflicts from 0.3 to 0.6 percent of children in the United States, with around 138,000 ages 6 to 17 being diagnosed with the condition. The causes for the syndrome are not well known and are thought to be largely genetic, with unidentified environmental factors increasing the likelihood of the condition. Usually the syndrome begins in childhood and the condition improves with age for some people, but for others the symptoms become more severe to the point that people become socially isolated and unable to work or attend school. © 1996-2017 The Washington Post

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders; Chapter 3: Neurophysiology: The Generation, Transmission, and Integration of Neural Signals
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders; Chapter 3: Neurophysiology: The Generation, Transmission, and Integration of Neural Signals
Link ID: 23468 - Posted: 04.08.2017

Shane Fistell When I was 17, my father took me to a juvenile treatment clinic to see if doctors could figure out what was wrong with me. I entered a room. I sat on a chair. I waited for a long while. There was a video camera trained on me. Then I heard voices, the voices of doctors behind a two-way mirror. It was like being in a police interrogation room in the movies. A voice boomed: “So Shane, why do you think you’re acting this way? Do you know what you’re doing?” I didn’t know what to say. What were the right answers? I was born with a neurological disorder that causes involuntary movements, vocalizations and tics — sometimes mild, sometimes wildly disruptive: Tourette’s syndrome. Since my youth, I’ve often been stopped in public by the police and questioned because of my symptoms. Questioned: That sums it up in a single word. My whole life has been questioned. I’m 56 now. I’ve often led a life of self-imposed house arrest. Two months here, three months there. Summer gone, winter over. How many years have I wasted? If people know of Tourette’s, they will often say: “Oh, that’s that swearing disease!” A woman once said to me: ”At least you don’t swear! You would’ve been worse off!” Compulsive swearing is called coprolalia. Each person with Tourette’s is different, and only some swear compulsively. I don’t; but for most of my life I have had to put up with people swearing and cursing at me because of my symptoms. A few years ago a man argued: “There’s no way you have Tourette’s! If you don’t swear you don’t have it! Period. And I know you don’t have it because I’ve seen it on TV!” © 2016 The New York Times Company

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 22901 - Posted: 11.23.2016

Lisa Fine Jess Thom says the word "biscuit" about 16,000 times every day. Her brother-in-law counted once. That's just one of the tics that Thom, a London-based performance artist, has to manage as part of her life with Tourette's syndrome, a neurological disorder characterized by involuntary vocal or motor tics. Specialists say the condition affects as many as 300,000 children in the United States, though many are undiagnosed. Thom has had tics since childhood, but she wasn't diagnosed until her 20s. "What disables me ... is other people's misunderstanding," she says. "What's exciting is that it's something we all have power to change." The condition is far more common than many people realize, and many misperceptions about it still exist, says Kevin McNaught, executive vice president of the advocacy group Tourette Association of America. "It's not a rare disorder," McNaught says, citing an estimated 1 in 100 school-age children with the condition, including many who aren't diagnosed until adulthood, if at all. Michael Chichioco, a California high school senior who has Tourette's syndrome, says he used to be bullied at school, with kids trying to trigger him to have outbursts. His tics come out more prominently when he is nervous or excited. © 2016 npr

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 22335 - Posted: 06.18.2016

Jessie Rack If you've ever had hiccups in a quiet room, you know how embarrassing and completely uncontrollable they can feel. What if, instead of the hiccups, your body jerked involuntarily or you blurted out words without meaning to? That's a rough idea of what living with Tourette syndrome can be like. Designers of a new computer program called TicHelper hope that they will be able to help children recognize and control these impulses themselves. People with Tourette's perform repetitive movements or vocalizations called tics. A simple tic might be something like head jerking, eye blinking, or throat clearing, and a complex tic might involve patterns of movement or saying multiple words or phrases. We don't know exactly what causes Tourette's, says Douglas Woods, a psychologist at Texas A&M University. Woods, who is also co-chair of the Tourette Association of America Medical Advisory Board, is one of the minds behind TicHelper. "Sometimes kids will grow out of [Tourette's]," Woods says. But if the wait-and-see approach isn't working, and the tics are interfering with daily life, there are a few treatment options. One option is medication. Woods says there are a few different antipsychotic drugs that are used to manage Tourette syndrome, but they have side effects and don't always work. An alternative to pharmaceutical treatment is behavioral therapy. A form of behavioral therapy called comprehensive behavioral intervention for tics, or CBIT for short, is commonly used. CBIT training teaches people with Tourette's to recognize the onset of a tic and to perform a different behavior when they feel one coming on. © 2015 NPR

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 21208 - Posted: 07.23.2015

by Anil Ananthaswamy For the first time, one of the tics that bedevil people with Tourette's has been induced in volunteers who don't themselves have the disorder, an experiment that might help us to understand and even treat the condition. Jennifer Finis of Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf, Germany, and her colleagues suspected that a type of Tourette's tic called echophenomena, which involves mimicking other's movements, may be caused by over-excitation of the supplementary motor area (SMA) – a brain region involved in the initiation of movement. To investigate further, her team used a non-invasive technique called repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), which involves delivering brief but strong magnetic pulses to the scalp. By changing the frequency of rTMS, the stimulation could either inhibit or excite the SMA. Thirty seconds before and after rTMS, 30 volunteers were shown video clips of someone making a spontaneous movement. Those who'd had their SMA excited were three times as likely to imitate the kind of behaviour they saw in the clips than those who'd had it suppressed. "We suspect that this is a mechanism that might underlie tics more generally than just echophenomena in people with Tourette's syndrome," says Peter Enticott of Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, who worked on the study. © Copyright Reed Business Information Ltd.

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 17434 - Posted: 10.30.2012

Alison Motluk Several students at LeRoy Central School District in northwestern New York state have developed a mysterious Tourette's-like condition, leaving doctors baffled as to the cause. This week, officials with the LeRoy Central School District in northwestern New York state approved a plan for further environmental testing at the town’s high school, where 19 people — 18 girls and one boy — have developed a sudden-onset disorder with symptoms similar to the movement disorder Tourette’s syndrome. The outbreak has captured national attention and led experts to suggest an array of possible explanations — none of which seem to quite work. With speculation running high, here is a look at the facts surrounding the outbreak. How and when did the symptoms appear? Several of the girls report that the symptoms seemed to come out of nowhere — one minute they were asleep, the next they had woken and developed uncontrollable movements and vocalizations. Their tics could be dramatic: arms twitching or jolting out to one side, speech chopped up by nonsense utterings, head jerking, eyes blinking. Some girls have also had blackouts and seizures. The first case was in May last year, the second in early September. By the end of October, eight students were affected. That is when the New York State Department of Health was called in to investigate. © 2012 Nature Publishing Group

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 15: Emotions, Aggression, and Stress; Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 11: Emotions, Aggression, and Stress; Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 16405 - Posted: 02.20.2012

By Melinda Wenner Moyer On the surface, Tourette’s syndrome and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) seem to have little in common. Tourette’s is characterized by repetitive involuntary facial or vocal tics, whereas OCD sufferers have all-consuming thoughts and overwhelming urges to perform certain actions. But 50 to 70 percent of people with Tourette’s also have OCD, and recent studies suggest that the same genetic roots may underlie both conditions [see “Obsessions Revisited,” by Melinda Wenner Moyer; Scientific American Mind, May/June 2011]. Now a new study published in Neurology may help scientists further understand how the disorders overlap and differ by revealing several key differences in the brain activity of Tourette’s patients with and without OCD. Andrew Feigin and his colleagues at North Shore LIJ Health System in Manhasset, N.Y., scanned the brains of 12 unmedicated Tourette’s patients—some of whom also had OCD—and 12 healthy subjects using positron-emission tomography, which reveals patterns of brain activity. Compared with healthy controls, those who had Tourette’s exhibited more activity in the premotor cortex and cerebellum, regions that handle motor control, and less activity in the striatum and orbitofrontal cortex, areas involved in decision making and learning. These findings support the idea that the symptoms of the disorder may arise from the brain’s inability to suppress abnormal actions using decision-making skills. When the researchers compared the Tourette’s patients who had OCD with those who did not, they found that the patients who had both disorders exhibited greater activity in the primary motor cortex and precuneus, an area that plays a role in self-awareness. Previous research has suggested that in patients who suffer from both disorders, OCD might show up more in the form of compulsions than obsessions, and these findings support that idea: the increased activity of the precuneus may reflect individuals’ efforts and ability to resist obsessive thought, and the motor cortex may be more active because OCD is manifesting itself more physically than mentally. © 2011 Scientific American

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 15849 - Posted: 09.29.2011

A Devon man suffering from Tourette's Syndrome is to undergo a pioneering form of brain surgery. Mike Sullivan, 32, from Exeter, will have deep brain stimulation to help reduce his involuntary tics. It sends electrical impulses to control brain activity and has proved effective in treating Parkinson's disease, cluster headaches and depression. Tourette's is a neurological disorder thought to occur if there is a problem with nerves communicating in the brain. People suffering from Tourette's usually have both motor and vocal tics. Mr Sullivan, who was diagnosed with the condition at the age of 12, became the victim of bullying and teasing at school. He opted for deep brain stimulation after his condition worsened and symptoms became more frequent. Mr Sullivan said he has to work hard to suppress the almost continual tics while working with the public at Exeter Register Office. He describes this experience as exhausting and mentally draining. "I can, up to a point, control it... but I'm always looking for a way out if people are staring," he told BBC News. BBC © MMXI

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 14959 - Posted: 02.07.2011

By THE NEW YORK TIMES Dozens of readers had questions about Tourette’s syndrome, the odd and poorly understand disorder that causes uncontrollable tics and vocalizations, after the disorder was profiled in a recent Patient Voices series. Here, Dr. Robert A. King and Dr. James F. Leckman of Yale School of Medicine respond to readers wondering whether Tourette’s is inherited and how common the disorder is. Is Tourette’s Inherited? My daughter is engaged to someone with Tourette’s. I worry about their children inheriting Tourette’s. What is the likelihood of that occurring? Anonymous, San Francisco Dr. King and Dr. Leckman respond: Tourette’s likely has genetic determinants, but they may vary from family to family. When a parent has Tourette’s, sons have a higher risk of inheriting the condition than daughters. On average, about 20 percent of male offspring will have Tourette’s, compared to only about 5 percent of female offspring. The rates for a chronic motor tic disorder are a bit higher: 30 percent of the sons and about 9 percent of the daughters will have such a condition. In contrast, the rates are reversed for obsessive-compulsive disorder, or O.C.D., which sometimes accompanies Tourette’s, with 7 percent of sons and 15 percent of daughters developing symptoms of O.C.D. These are all approximate figures. Copyright 2010 The New York Times Company

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 14168 - Posted: 06.24.2010

By THE NEW YORK TIMES Dr. Robert A. King and Dr. James F. Leckman of the Yale School of Medicine recently joined the Consults blog to answer readers’ questions about Tourette’s syndrome. Here, Dr. Leckman and Dr. King respond to readers asking about living with the strange movements, tics and vocalizations of Tourette’s, which can be socially difficult and, in some cases, lifelong. Do You Tell a Teacher About Tourette’s? Jen from Brookline, Mass., asks: My daughter started exhibiting tics at age 2 and was diagnosed with Tourrette’s at age 3. Now she’s 5 and will start kindergarten in September. I wrestle with whether to tell her teachers about it right off the bat, or wait and see if it becomes an issue. Her symptoms, so far, have been mild and not always evident. I would hate for her to be “labeled” unnecessarily (with whatever negatives come with that), but on the other hand, I feel that not being forthright is dishonest, and could equally be a disservice to my daughter. Any advice from those who have recently BTDT? Dr. King and Dr. Leckman respond: Tics wax and wane. For some, the tics will subside early in life. For others, the worst-ever tics occur at around 10 years of age or later in life. Unlike your daughter, some children with Tourette’s who begin school have had bad periods during which the tics are severe. It is likely that such children will have bad periods in the future. If the tics are pronounced enough that a teacher or peers are likely to notice and comment, it is better to be proactive and to be prepared. Copyright 2010 The New York Times Company

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders; Chapter 7: Life-Span Development of the Brain and Behavior
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders; Chapter 13: Memory, Learning, and Development
Link ID: 13866 - Posted: 06.24.2010

Jennifer S. Altman A stand-up comedian, a ventriloquist who performs for children and a high school sophomore are among the people who share their stories about living with Tourette’s syndrome in the latest installment of Patient Voices. The often misunderstood condition can cause a range of tics, including sudden jerking movements, grunting, snorting and clearing the throat, which typically first appear during childhood. This week, Dr. Robert A. King and Dr. James F. Leckman of the Yale School of Medicine join the Consults blog to answer readers’ questions about Tourette’s syndrome. “Once thought to be a rare, severe and lifelong condition, Tourette’s is now known to be relatively common, affecting up to one percent of school-age children,” Dr. King says. “Symptoms are often mild and can spontaneously, and markedly, improve by later adolescence.” Dr. King is professor of child psychiatry and medical director of the Yale Child Study Center’s Tourette’s/Obessive-Compulsive Disorder Clinic. Dr. Leckman is the Neison Harris Professor of Child Psychiatry and Pediatrics at Yale, where he also serves as the center’s director of research. Both doctors have been intensively involved in the clinical care of individuals with Tourette’s syndrome and early onset obsessive-compulsive disorder for more than two decades. Do you have a question about Tourette’s syndrome? Post your comments and questions in the comments box below. Drs. King and Leckman will be responding to readers next week. Copyright 2010 The New York Times Company

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 13772 - Posted: 06.24.2010

When you have Tourette Syndrome, you get used to the physical and vocal tics that others often view as faux pas. I know, I have it. When I interviewed 14-year-old Andrew Youngen, who participated in a study designed to find out if the neurological disorder affects the brain in other ways, I began by asking him to tell me some things about himself for background. I wanted to see if he would mention his Tourette Syndrome in his description of himself. He didn't. He told me how he enjoys coin collecting, but in a way that I thought was pretty unique-- he makes sure to get one of those kitschy-touristy penny presses at every attraction he visits. But, while people with Tourette may not think of the neurological disorder as one of the most important parts of themselves, having it has made Andrew into a sort of ad-hoc Tourette ambassador. He does "in-service" visits to classrooms to explain that his sudden or repetitive motions and sounds are involuntary. "After we watch the video, I say in my own words what Tourette is and how it affects me, and I can't help anything about it And then they usually have some questions, like, actually last year, I got a question, 'What can we do to help?'" "It was the first time I've ever gotten that, it was a very nice one," Andrew says. © ScienCentral, 2000-2007

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 10778 - Posted: 06.24.2010

by Greg Miller People with Tourette syndrome are plagued by unwanted movements and verbal tics that run the gamut from extra eye blinks and grimaces to involuntary grunts or even cursing. Although the disorder tends to run in families, little is known about its genetic basis. Now researchers have found a mutated gene that appears to cause the disorder in one extremely unusual family with nine afflicted individuals. Although this mutation is not the cause of the vast majority of Tourette syndrome cases, it may push researchers to investigate a mechanism—and potential treatments—they otherwise would not have considered. Since the French neurologist Georges Gilles de la Tourette first described his namesake condition 125 years ago, scientists have puzzled over the cause. Much recent attention has focused on a brain region called the basal ganglia that is involved in repetitive behaviors and on the neurotransmitter dopamine. In 2005, a team led by child psychiatrist and geneticist Matthew State of Yale University School of Medicine, reported one of the first genetic clues to the disorder, a mutation in a gene called SLITRK1 that seems to be responsible for a rare handful of cases. But the function of SLITRK1 and its contribution to Tourette syndrome are still largely a mystery. In the new study, State and colleagues examined a family in which the father and all eight offspring (six sons and two daughters) have the syndrome. Extensive genetic detective work led them to a mutation in a gene called HDC, which encodes L-histidine decarboxylase, an enzyme involved in the production of histamine, a signaling molecule with a wide variety of roles throughout the body. The same mutation was present in all members of the family who had Tourette but was absent in thousands of DNA samples from control subjects, who included unrelated people with similar ethnic backgrounds as well as a group of 720 Tourette patients, the researchers report today in The New England Journal of Medicine. The mutated version of the HDC gene likely results in a truncated version of the enzyme, which would result in reduced histamine levels, State says. © 2010 American Association for the Advancement of Science

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 14044 - Posted: 06.24.2010

By Scott O. Lilienfeld and Hal Arkowitz On May 22, 2001, radio talk show personality Laura Schlessinger, better known as Dr. Laura, received a call from a woman who was distressed by her sister’s decision to exclude their nephew from an upcoming family wedding. When the caller mentioned that the boy suffered from Tourette’s disorder (also sometimes called Tourette syndrome), Dr. Laura berated her for even thinking that it might be appropriate to invite a child who would “scream out vulgarities in the middle of the wedding.” As we’ll soon explain, Dr. Laura’s comments embody just one of several common myths regarding Tourette’s. Tourette’s disorder is the eponymous name for the condition first formally described in 1885 by French neurologist Georges Gilles de la Tourette, who dubbed it maladie des tics (“sickness of tics”). According to the current edition of the American Psychiatric Association’s diagnostic manual, Tourette’s disorder is marked by a history of both motor (movement) tics and phonic (sound) tics. Motor tics include eye twitching, facial grimacing, tongue protrusion, head turning and shrugging of the shoulders, whereas phonic tics encompass grunting, coughing, throat clearing, yelling inappropriate words and even barking. Some tics are “complex,” meaning they are coordinated series of actions. For example, a Tourette’s patient might continually pick up and smell objects or repeat what someone else just said (echolalia). Often a tic is preceded by a “premonitory urge”—that is, a powerful desire to emit the tic, which some have likened to the feeling we experience immediately before sneezing. Tourette’s patients typically report short-term relief following the tic. © 1996-2009 Scientific American Inc.

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 13091 - Posted: 06.24.2010

By Jenette Restivo [ABCNEWS.com] B O S T O N, Dec. 27 — While most of us think of the typical Tourette's patient as the rare eccentric who barks obscenities and jerks their arms wildly, a recent study says much more subtle symptoms of Tourette's and related tic disorders are far more common than once thought. "[Kids with mild tics] are at a higher risk for developing future school problems. This is a way of identifying children ahead of time so they can be monitored — a clue to how the child's brain is organized," says lead study author Dr. Roger Kurlan, director of the Tourette's Syndrome Clinic and the Cognitive and Behavioral Neurology Clinic at the University of Rochester in New York. Tip of the Iceberg To determine the prevalence of tics and Tourette's Syndrome in school-aged children, Kurlan looked at a group of 1,600 children in both regular and special education classrooms in Rochester. Copyright © 2002 ABCNEWS Internet Ventures.

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 1257 - Posted: 06.24.2010

By Nathan Seppa An intensive course of behavioral therapy can limit the verbal and physical tics that plague some children with Tourette disorder, a new study finds. This form of therapy, in which a child learns simple ways to derail tics, led to improvement in more than half of children treated, scientists report in the May 19 Journal of the American Medical Association. “I think this is groundbreaking,” says clinical psychologist Martin Franklin of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, who didn’t participate in the trial. “Clinically, we now have pretty powerful evidence of the efficacy of a behavioral treatment in this disorder.” Tourette disorder is characterized by short, rapid physical or vocal tics that can take the form of jerking motions, blinking, grimacing, blurting out words or throat clearing. These tics are brought on by urges. And much as a cigarette satisfies a smoker’s need for nicotine, the tics seem to resolve these urges, but at a cost. People with Tourette disorder, which starts in childhood and affects about six in 1,000, can face isolation and social stigmatization. “The urge-tic-relief cycle becomes automatic over time” in Tourette disorder, says study coauthor John Piacentini, a clinical psychologist at the University of California, Los Angeles. “We want to slow it down and make it less automatic.” © Society for Science & the Public 2000 - 2010

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 14089 - Posted: 06.24.2010

Characterized by sudden jerking movements and uncontrollable tics and vocalizations, Tourette’s syndrome is a strange, often misunderstood condition. What is it like to live without full control of your body? Seven men and women talk about living with the twitches of Tourette’s. What is it like to live with a chronic disease, mental illness or confusing condition? In Patient Voices, we feature first person accounts of the challenges patients face as they cope with various health issues. Interactive Feature Patient Voices: Migraine Almost 30 million Americans suffer from migraines. What is it like to live with migraine pain? Six men and women speak about their experiences. Copyright 2010 The New York Times Company

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders
Link ID: 13764 - Posted: 06.24.2010

Researchers have identified the first gene mutation associated with Tourette syndrome - opening a new avenue for understanding the complex disorder that causes muscle and vocal tics. Until now, causes of Tourette syndrome (TS), which afflicts as many as 1 in 100 people, have eluded researchers because the disease appears to be caused by subtle mutations in many genes. The researchers published their findings in the October 14, 2005, issue of the journal Science. Matthew W. State of the Yale University School of Medicine was senior author of the paper. His research was supported by a Howard Hughes Medical Institute institutional award to Yale that was used to support early research by promising scientists at Yale. According to State, early theories suggesting that a single gene mutation causes TS have proven incorrect. “There has been an evolving hypothesis about Tourette syndrome being a much more complex disorder,” State said. “I think there is general consensus at this point that there are likely to be multiple genes, likely interacting, and probably different sets of genes in different people, that contribute to TS.” The notion of multiple genes is borne out by the complex phenotype of the syndrome, which is often associated with obsessive-compulsive disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or depression, said State. © 2005 Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

Related chapters from BN8e: Chapter 16: Psychopathology: Biological Basis of Behavior Disorders; Chapter 15: Emotions, Aggression, and Stress
Related chapters from MM:Chapter 12: Psychopathology: The Biology of Behavioral Disorders; Chapter 11: Emotions, Aggression, and Stress
Link ID: 8029 - Posted: 06.24.2010