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Tourette's Disorder

Tourette's Disorder

Tourette's disorder (TD) is a condition in which a person has spasms, also called tics, that typically include blinking, frowning, jerking the head, and raising or jerking the arms or shoulders. A person may also shout words (sometimes obscenities) or make unusual sounds, such as grunting or snorting.

Symptoms of TD first develop during childhood and become most severe at about age 12. In most children, tics become less severe or go away completely in the teen years. But tics can continue into adulthood.

Treatment for TD focuses on managing tics. Most cases of TD are mild and will not require medical treatment. If the tics are severe, medicine or habit reversal is considered. The tics can be reduced, but there is no cure for TD at this time.

Tourette's disorder is also known as Tourette's syndrome. It is more common in boys than in girls.

Last Revised: July 26, 2011

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: John Pope, MD - Pediatrics & Karin M. Lindholm, DO - Neurology

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