Congratulations to Dr. Okun on the publication of “A Review and Update on Tourette Syndrome: Where Is the Field Headed?” This article was published in Current Neurology and Neuroscience online on March 2, 2016 and will be in the April 2016 paper issue.
Tourette syndrome (TS) is a childhood onset neurologic disorder with manifestations including multiple motor and phonic tics, and in most cases a variety of behavioral comorbidities such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, and other impulse control disorders. Although it is considered a hereditary disorder, likely modified by environmental factors, genetic studies have yet to uncover relevant causative genes and there is no animal model that mimics the broad clinical phenomenology of TS. There has been a marked increase in the number of neurophysiological, neuroimaging, and other studies on TS. The findings from these studies, however, have been difficult to interpret because of small sample sizes, variability of symptoms across patients, and comorbidities. Although anti-dopaminergic drugs are the most widely used medications in the treatment of TS, there has been increasing interest in other drugs, behavioral therapies, and surgical approaches including deep brain stimulation. Herein, we review the current literature and discuss the complexities of TS and the challenges in understanding its pathophysiology and in selecting the most appropriate treatment. We also offer an expert’s view of where the field of TS may be headed.