Fits, Tantrums, and Rages in TS and Related Disorders
Curr Dev Dis Rep
Tourette syndrome (TS) is a neuropsychiatric disorder of childhood onset characterized by motor and phonic tics. In the majority of cases, psychiatric comorbidity complicates TS, manifesting with a wide range of affective and behavioral disturbances. Aggressive symptoms are relatively common in TS and have adverse impacts on family functioning and quality of life. The etiology of such symptoms may reflect a complex interplay among neurobiological, genetic, and environment factors. This paper provides an update on aggressive symptoms in TS with focus on explosive outbursts or “rages” and self-injurious behaviors. Recent studies highlight the association between aggression and common psychiatric comorbidities as well as the role of psychosocial influences. Aggressive symptoms in TS appear associated with tic severity and certain psychiatric comorbid disorders including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD), and mood disorders. Although still limited, pharmacological and non-pharmacological evidence-based treatments are emerging.
School of Medicine