The Semiology of Tics, Tourette's, and Their Associations

Christos Ganos*, Alexander Münchau, Kailash P. Bhatia

*Corresponding author for this work
5 Citations (Scopus)


Gilles de la Tourette syndrome (GTS) is a prototypical neuropsychiatric disorder breaking the boundary of disciplinary dualism between neurology and psychiatry. The diagnosis of GTS is clinical and, in most cases, straightforward. Tics as a hallmark of GTS are usually easy to recognize and distinguish from other movement disorders as fragmented, repetitive, exaggerated movements resembling normal motor behavior, but appearing out of context. In complex cases, knowledge on additional characteristics and signs as, for example, tic distribution, suggestibility, voluntary tic inhibition, and presence of echo- or paliphenomena might further aid clinical diagnosis. However, although defining GTS, tics are rarely the main issue. The presence of comorbidities and coexisting psychopathologies often hampers normal development and negatively affects quality of life. Their recognition and treatment is paramount. Here, we review existing literature and provide a comprehensive update on the multifarious aspects of the movement disorder and neuropsychiatry of GTS. We also provide a list of associated movement disorders known to occur in GTS patients and discuss differential diagnoses to be considered in atypical cases. We finally comment on available treatment options.

Original languageEnglish
JournalMovement Disorders Clinical Practice
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)145-153
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 01.09.2014


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