Tourette syndrome (TS) is a neurological disorder manifested by motor (jerking of the head or jumping) and phonic or vocal (grunting, coughing or shouting) tics with onset during childhood. It usually starts between 2 and 15 years. The symptoms persist more than a year and they can vary greatly from person to person another. It is familial disease with no exact known cause. Studies indicate 1 in every 100 children is likely to be affected with Tourette's. It is 4-5 times more common in boys than in girls. Genetic studies suggest that some forms of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) and OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) are genetically related to TS.
There is no standard cure for Tourette's. Psychobehavioral therapy is sufficient in case of mild symptoms. Cognitive behavioral therapy and Relaxation techniques may be helpful in some patients. Dopamine antagonists including haloperidol to bind specifically to D2 receptor proved to be effective in the treatment of TS. Alternate treatment options like massage therapies, exercise, chiropractic therapy and acupuncture have been used to help relieve the incidence of tics. Many investigators are conducting a variety of genetic studies and finding genes for responsible for TS and provide a way towards understanding genetic risk factors.