Behavioral Functioning in Children and Adolescents with Tourette Syndrome


Tourette Syndrome [TS] is characterized by multiple, involuntary and repetitive motor and vocal tics. In addition, a number of subtle behavioral atypicalities are often mentioned in the clinical literature, but have received scant empirical attention. To investigate a broad range of behavioral symptoms associated with TS, scores on the Achenbach Child Behavior Checklist [CBC] were compared for 21 TS patients, 21 childhood migraine patients, and 21 idiopathic seizure disorder patients, matched for age ([xmacr ]=12.5 years) and sex (7 girls and 14 boys per group). Chi-square analysis of the CBC items revealed significantly greater frequencies of crying, of fears and phobias, of obsessive thoughts, and worrying among the TS children. Findings demonstrate a more pronounced tendency to demand attention, to feel guilty, to have strange ideas, and to engage in compulsive activities. The TS children are more likely to bite their nails, to pick at body parts, and to store things up for which they have no need. They are also more likely to behave shyly and to be teased by other children. Further analysis of the CBC factors revealed higher factor scores among the TS children on Hyper-activity, Non-communicativeness, and Social-withdrawal, with significantly more scores falling outside the range of normal (T score > 70) among the TS children than among the migraine or seizure disorder children.

DOI: 10.1203/00006450-198404001-01720

Cite this paper

@article{Matthews1984BehavioralFI, title={Behavioral Functioning in Children and Adolescents with Tourette Syndrome}, author={Wendy Matthews and Gabor Barabas}, journal={Pediatric Research}, year={1984}, volume={18}, pages={380A-380A} }