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Treatment of Tourette’s Syndrome: Treatment Options and Strategies

dr shukla neurologist tx
Medically reviewed by Dr. Shukla
dr shukla neurologist tx
Medically reviewed by Dr. Shukla

Tourette’s Syndrome is a complex neurological disorder. It’s characterized by involuntary, repetitive movements and vocalizations known as tics. These tics can range from mild to severe. They significantly impact an individual’s quality of life. There is no cure for Tourette’s Syndrome. But several treatment options and strategies exist to help manage its symptoms.

The treatment approach for TS is highly individualized. Among them are:

  • Medications.
  • Behavioral therapies.

There has been growing interest in alternative and complementary therapies in recent years. Also, lifestyle modifications and stress management techniques improve well-being.

This article explores the various treatments of Tourette’s Syndrome. It will provide an overview of advancements in managing this complex condition.

Tourette's Syndrome meaning

Understanding Tourette’s Syndrome

It is a neurological disorder characterized by involuntary, repetitive movements and vocalizations. They’re called tics that need medication for Tourettes. These tics can manifest as:

  • Eye blinking.
  • Facial twitching.
  • Throat clearing.
  • Involuntary utterances of words or phrases.

TS typically emerges during childhood or adolescence. And it varies widely in its presentation, severity, and progression.

The exact cause of TS remains unknown. But a combination of genetic and environmental factors may contribute to its development. Studies have identified certain gene mutations. They may increase the risk of developing TS. But the specific mechanisms are still being explored.

Understanding goes beyond recognizing its symptoms and treatment of Tourette’s Syndrome. It requires acknowledging the impact it can have on an individual’s life, including:

  • Social.
  • Emotional.
  • Educational challenges.

Individuals with TS may face stigmatization and misconceptions. It’s due to their tics, leading to feelings of embarrassment, isolation, and anxiety.

Increased awareness and education about TS are essential. It’s to promote understanding and acceptance. Recognizing that TS is a neurological, not a behavioral illness, helps reduce stigma. And it fosters empathy and support for those affected by the disorder.

Medication Options for Tourette's Syndrome

Medication Options for Tourette’s Syndrome

Medication options for TS aim to reduce the frequency and severity of tics. It aims to ease associated symptoms, and improve quality of life. Here is a list of commonly prescribed medications and how they can help to cure Tourettes:

  • Antipsychotics. Haloperidol, risperidone, and pimozide are often used. They control tics by blocking dopamine receptors in the brain.
  • Alpha-2 adrenergic agonists. Clonidine and guanfacine are alpha-2 adrenergic agonists. This Tourettes medicine can help manage tics by regulating norepinephrine activity in the brain.
  • Dopamine-depleting agents. Tetrabenazine is a medication that depletes dopamine. It’s sometimes used for severe tics that do not respond to other treatments.
  • Stimulant medications. Stimulant medications like methylphenidate or amphetamines may help. It’s in cases where tics coexist with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
  • Atypical antipsychotics. Aripiprazole and Ziprasidone are newer antipsychotics. Tourettes medications have shown efficacy in reducing tics. And they have a lower risk of side effects compared to traditional antipsychotics.
  • Botulinum toxin injections. In some cases, doctors use botulinum toxin injections. They target specific muscle groups and reduce localized tics’ severity.

Note that Tourettes medicine choices should be made in consultation with a healthcare professional. They consider the individual’s signs, medical history, and potential side effects.

Alpha-Adrenergic Agonists

Alpha-adrenergic agonists are a class of Tourettes medications. They are commonly used to treat TS. Two main alpha-adrenergic agonists prescribed for TS are clonidine and guanfacine. These medications work by targeting alpha-2 adrenergic receptors in the brain. It helps regulate the release and activity of norepinephrine. It’s a neurotransmitter involved in various brain functions.

Clonidine and guanfacine are primarily used. It’s to reduce the frequency and intensity of tics associated with TS. They are effective for both motor and vocal tics. These Tourettes medications may also provide extra benefits. They’re improving attention and reducing impulsivity. It makes them particularly useful when tics coexist with conditions like ADHD.

Alpha-adrenergic agonists are generally well-tolerated. And their common side effects include drowsiness, dry mouth, and sedation. Following guidance about dosage and potential interactions with other Tourettes medications is important. Regular monitoring and gradual adjustments in dosage may be necessary. It’s to achieve optimal results and cut side effects.

Behavioral Therapies for Tourette’s Syndrome

Behavioral therapies play a crucial role in the comprehensive treatment approach. These therapies aim to help individuals manage their tics. They reduce tics impact on daily functioning and develop coping strategies. Here is a list of commonly used treatment options of Tourette’s Syndrome:

  • Habit Reversal Training (HRT). It focuses on increasing awareness of premonitory urges or sensations that precede tics. And this Tourettes medicine approach teaches individuals to replace tics with alternative, competing responses.
  • Comprehensive Behavioral Intervention for Tics (CBIT). It mixes HRT with other strategies. They are relaxation training and functional interventions. It’s to address tics and associated impairments.
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT). CBT helps individuals identify and change negative thoughts and beliefs related to tics. They manage anxiety and stress and develop adaptive coping mechanisms.
  • Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP). This cure for Tourettes is based on gradually exposing individuals to situations that trigger tics. And it helps them resist engaging in tic behavior, thus reducing the urge to tic.
  • Psychoeducation and Supportive Therapy. Providing information about TS, fostering support networks, and addressing psychological and emotional challenges can enhance well-being and resilience.

Behavioral treatments of Tourette’s Syndrome are most effective when conducted by professionals. They specialize in the treatment of tic disorders. Individualized treatment plans are tailored to meet unique needs.

Tourette's Syndrome Treatment

Multidisciplinary Approach to Tourette’s Syndrome Treatment

The treatment of Tourette’s Syndrome often requires a multidisciplinary approach. It involves a team of healthcare professionals from various specialties. 

This collaborative approach aims to address the diverse needs of individuals with TS. And it provides comprehensive care. Here is a list of key professionals who may be part of a multidisciplinary treatment team. And there is also info on how they can help to cure Tourettes:

  • Neurologist. They specialize in the diagnosis and medical management of neurological disorders, including TS. They can prescribe medications and track their effectiveness.
  • Psychiatrist. Psychiatrists can provide evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of psychiatric conditions. Those may coexist with TS. They are anxiety, depression, or obsessive-compulsive disorder.
  • Psychologist. Psychologists offer therapy and counseling services with cure for Tourettes. It helps individuals cope with the emotional and psychological aspects of the illness. They may provide cognitive-behavioral therapy or other evidence-based interventions.
  • Occupational Therapist. They help develop practical skills and strategies. It’s to manage daily activities affected by tics. They focus on improving functional independence and quality of life.
  • Speech and Language Therapist. They assist with communication challenges. They may arise due to vocal tics or associated difficulties. They provide techniques to enhance speech clarity and develop alternative communication methods.
  • Social Worker. Besides the cure for Tourettes, support, advocacy, and resources are vital. Social workers can offer them. They help navigate challenges, access community services, and address social and emotional needs.

This approach ensures care that addresses the medical, psychological, social and functional aspects of TS. It promotes the best possible outcomes for individuals with TS.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, treating TS involves using different approaches. This includes Tourettes medicines, behavioral therapies, and a team of specialists. There is no cure for TS. But these strategies aim to reduce tic frequency and severity. They improve coping skills and enhance well-being. 

Medications like antipsychotics and alpha-adrenergic agonists can help manage tics. Behavioral therapies like habit reversal training and cognitive-behavioral therapy provide useful techniques. They’re for tic management and emotional support. A multidisciplinary team includes:

  • Neurologists.
  • Psychiatrists.
  • Psychologists.
  • Occupational therapists.
  • Speech and language therapists.
  • Social workers.

They can provide comprehensive care and address various needs. By combining these Tourettes medicine options, people with TS can navigate the challenges associated with the disorder. And they can lead more fulfilling lives.

FAQs:

  • What is the first line of treatment for Tourette’s disorder?

The first line of treatment for Tourette’s disorder typically involves medication options. The most commonly prescribed medications are antipsychotics and alpha-2 adrenergic agonists. Antipsychotics are often used to reduce the frequency and severity of tics. Alpha-2 adrenergic agonists are also effective in managing tics. And they may help in cases where coexisting conditions, such as ADHD, are present.

  • What are the latest treatments for Tourette’s syndrome?

The field of Tourette’s syndrome treatment is continuously evolving. And new treatment options are being explored. Some of the latest treatments include deep brain stimulation (DBS). It’s a surgical procedure that involves implanting electrodes in specific brain regions. It’s to modulate neural activity and reduce tics. Also, medical cannabis is being studied for its potential therapeutic effects on tics.

  • How to cure Tourette’s?

Currently, there is no known cure for Tourette’s syndrome. But various treatment options are available to manage its symptoms. Medications, behavioral therapies, and a multidisciplinary approach can help individuals with Tourette’s syndrome. They help manage their tics and associated challenges effectively.

  • Are there any lifestyle modifications that can support the management of Tourette’s syndrome?

Yes, certain lifestyle modifications can support the management of Tourette’s syndrome. These include:

  1. Stress management techniques.
  2. Regular exercise.
  3. Maintaining a balanced diet.
  4. Ensuring adequate sleep.
  5. Minimizing triggers that may exacerbate tics.

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Lone Star Neurology
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Edward Medina
Edward Medina
15:34 30 Jun 22
Just such an amazing staff that makes you feel like part of their family. I’ve been going there for over 5 years now... and each visit I get the very best care and treatments that I have ever received in the 20+ years that I’ve been dealing with severe debilitating migraines. Since i started seeing them the number of my migraines has dropped from 15-20 a month to 2-3 every 3 month. I highly recommend them …they will change your life!read more
Daneisha Johnson
Daneisha Johnson
22:20 19 May 22
Dr. Askari was very kind and explained everything so I could understand. The other staff were nice as well. I would... have gave 5 stars but I was a little taken aback when I checked in and had to pay 600.00 upfront. I think that should have been discussed in a appointment confirmation call or email just so I could have been prepared.read more
Jean Cooper
Jean Cooper
16:54 29 Apr 22
I love the office staff they are friendly and very helpful. Dr. JODIE is very caring and understanding to your needs... and wants to help you. I will go back. would recommend Dr. Dr. Jodie to other Patients in a heart beat. The team works well together.read more
Linda M
Linda M
19:40 02 Apr 22
I was obviously stressed, needing to see a neurologist. The staff was so patient and Dr. Ansari was so kind. At one... point he told me to relax, we have time, when I was relaying my history of my condition. That helped ease my stress. I have seen 3 other neurologists and he was the only one who performed any assessment tests on my cognitive and physical skills. At one point I couldn't complete two assessments and got upset and cried. I was told, it's OK. That's why you're here. I was truly impressed, and super pleased with the whole experience!read more
Leslie Durham
Leslie Durham
15:05 01 Apr 22
I've been coming here for about 5 years. The staff are ALWAYS friendly and knowledgeable. The Doctors are the absolute... best!! Jodie Moore is always in such a great mood which is a plus when you are already stressed. Highly recommendedread more
Monica Del Bosque
Monica Del Bosque
14:13 25 Mar 22
Since my first post my thoughts have changed here. It's unfortunate. My doctor and PA were great, but the office staff... is horrible. They never call you back when they say they will, they misinform you, they cause you too much stress wondering what's going on, they don't keep you posted. They never answer the phone. At this point I've left four messages in the last week, and I have sent three messages. Twice from their portal and one direct email. No response. My appointment is on Monday morning at 8:30am, no confirmation on my insurance and what's going on. What the heck is going on, this is ridiculous!I've given up... the stress her office staff has put me through is just not worth it. You can do so much better, please clean house, either change out your office staff, or find a way for them to be more efficient please. You have to do something. This is not how you want to run your practice. It leaves a very bad impression on your business.read more
Ron Buckholz
Ron Buckholz
23:32 23 Mar 22
I was actually pleasantly surprised with this visit! It took me a long time to get the appointment scheduled because no... one answers your phones EVER! After a month, I finally got in, and your staff was warm, friendly, and I was totally impressed! I feel like you will take care of my needs!read more
Steve Nabavi
Steve Nabavi
16:28 16 Mar 22
It was a nice visit. Happy staff doing all they can do to comfort the patients in a very calming environment. You ask... me they are earned a big gold star on the fridge. My only complaint they didn't give me any cookies.read more
Katie Lewis
Katie Lewis
16:10 10 Feb 22
Had very positive appointments with Jodie and Dr. Sheth for my migraine care. Jodie was so fast with the injections and... has so much valuable info. I started to feel light headed during checkout and the staff was SO helpful—giving me a chair, water, and taking me into a private room until I felt better. Highly recommend this practice for migraine patients, they know what they’re doing!!read more
Joshua Martinez
Joshua Martinez
16:02 10 Dec 21
I was scheduled to be checked and just want to say that the staff was fantastic. They were kind and helpful. I was... asked many questions related to what was going on and not once did I feel as though I was being brushed off. The front desk staff was especially great in assisting me. I'm scheduled to go back for a mri and am glad that I'll be going there.read more
Isabel Ivy
Isabel Ivy
21:42 03 Nov 21
I had such a good experience with Lone Star Neurology, Brent my MRI Tech was so awesome and made sure I was very... comfortable during the appointment. He gave me ear plugs, a pillow, leg support and blanket, easiest MRI ever lol 🤣 My 72 hour EEG nurse Amanda was also so awesome. She made sure I was take care of over the 3 days and took her time with the electrodes to make sure it was comfortable for me! Paige was also a huge help in answering all my questions when it came to my test results, and letting me know her honest opinions about how I should go forth with my treatment.read more
Leslie Luce
Leslie Luce
17:37 20 Oct 21
The professionalism and want to help attitude of this office was present from the moment I contacted them. The follow... up and follow through as well as their willingness to find a way to schedule my dad was above and beyond. We visited two offices in the same day with the same experience. I am appreciative of this—we spend a lot of time with doctors and this was top notch start to finish.read more
robert Parker
robert Parker
16:38 16 Apr 21
I love going to this office. The staff is friendly and helpful. The doctor is great. I am getting the best... neurological tests and treatment I have ever had. The only reason I did not give them a 5 star rating is because it is impossible to reach a live person at the office to reschedule appointments. Every time I have tried to get through to the office it says all people are busy and I am sent to a voicemail. If they could get their phone answering fixed, I would give them a strong 5 stars.read more
MaryAnn Hornbaker
MaryAnn Hornbaker
00:26 25 Feb 21
Dr. Harney is an excellent Dr. I found him friendly , personable and thorough. I evidently am an unusual case. ... Therefore he spent a Hugh amount of time educating me. He even gave me literature to further explain my condition and how to follow up. This is something you rarely get from your doctors. So I am more than please with my doctor and his staff.read more
Roger Arguello
Roger Arguello
03:05 29 Jan 21
Always courteous, professional. The staff is very friendly and always work with you to find the best appointment time.... The care team has been great. Always taking the time to listen to your concerns and to find the best treatment.read more
Margaret Rowland
Margaret Rowland
01:12 27 Jan 21
I have been a patient at Lone Star Neurology for several years. Now both my adult daughters also are patients there. I... love Jodie. She is always so prompt whether it is a teleamed call are a visit in the office. She takes the time to explain everything to me and answers all my questions. I am so blessed to have Jodie as my doctor.read more
Susan Miller
Susan Miller
03:01 13 Jan 21
My husband had an accident 5 years ago and Lone Star Neurology has been such a blessing to us with my husbands care.... Jodie Moore is his provider and she is amazing! Jodie is very knowledgeable, caring, and thorough. She takes her time with you, making sure your needs are met and she is happy to answer any questions you may have. Lone Star Neurology’s patients are very lucky to have Jodie providing their care. Thank you Lone Star Neurology and especially Jodie for everything you have done for us. Jodie, you are the best!read more
Windalyn C
Windalyn C
01:32 09 Jan 21
Jodie is wonderful. She is very caring and knowledgeable. I have been to over a dozen neurologists, and none were able... to help me as much as they have here. Thanks!read more
Katie Kordel
Katie Kordel
00:40 09 Jan 21
Jodi Moore, nurse practitioner, is amazing. I have suffered from frequent, debilitating headaches for almost 20 years.... She has provided the best proactive and responsive care I have ever received. My quality of life has been greatly improved by her caring approach and tenacity in finding solutions.read more
Ellie Natsis
Ellie Natsis
15:41 07 Jan 21
I have had the best experience at this neurologist's office! For over a year I have been receiving iv treatments here... each month and my nurse, Bobbie is beyond wonderful!! She's so attentive, knowledgeable, caring, and detail oriented. She makes an otherwise uncomfortable experience much more pleasant and definitely puts me at ease! She also helps me with my insurance,ordering this specialty medication and dealing with the ordering process which is no easy feat.Needless to say, she goes above a beyond in every way and I'm so grateful to this office and to Bobbie for all they do for me!read more
Matt Morris
Matt Morris
15:39 07 Jan 21
Let me start by saying that I have been coming here for years. Due to my autoimmune disease, I am in this office... once every three weeks for multiple hours at a time. The office is very clean and the staff very friendly. My only complaint would be there communication via phone. They aren't the best at responding if you leave a voicemail and expect a call back. I understand that this is prob just due to the sheer number of alls they receive daily. What I can say I like the best about the office are the people. Bobby who handles my infusions is great. I never have any issues with her setting up my infusions. She is very quick to reply to messages sent via text and if she were to leave then my whole opinion of the office may change. I also enjoy people like Matt, Lauren, and Jodi. I appreciate all that they do for me and without this team I'm not sure I would be as happy as I am to visit the office as frequently as I have to. Please ensure that these folks are recognized as they are what makes my visit to this office so tolerable :).read more
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