Investigating the effects of tic suppression on premonitory urge ratings in children and adolescents with Tourette's syndrome.

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, USA.
Behaviour Research and Therapy (Impact Factor: 3.85). 01/2008; 45(12):2964-76. DOI: 10.1016/j.brat.2007.08.007
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Tics represent a complex class of behaviors that have a neurobiological origin and are influenced by factors both internal and external to the individual. One factor that has gained recent attention is the premonitory urge. Contemporary behavioral models suggest that some tics are preceded by aversive somatic urges that increase in severity when tics are suppressed and are attenuated by performance of the tic. It has been proposed that the removal of premonitory urges may strengthen or maintain tics via negative reinforcement. This investigation is the first to empirically evaluate the effect of tic suppression on the premonitory urge phenomenon. Five children and adolescents, ages 8-17years, participated in the study. Using an ABAB reversal design, tic frequency and subjective premonitory urge ratings were recorded under conditions of free-to-tic baseline (BL) and reinforced tic suppression (differential reinforcement of zero-rate behavior). Results show that four of the five children demonstrated reliable suppression. Of the four children who achieved suppression, three demonstrated a pattern in which subjective urge ratings were higher during suppression than during BL. Results provide preliminary support for the negative reinforcement view of tic function for some children.

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    ABSTRACT: The primary symptoms of Tourette Syndrome (TS) are motor and vocal tics, but increasingly, researchers have examined the role of sensory phenomena in biobehavioral models of the disorder. These sensory phenomena involve tic-related premonitory urge sensations as well as potential abnormalities in the perceptual and behavioral experiences associated with external sensory input. As such, dysfunctional sensorimotor integration might represent a key facet of TS pathology. The current paper reviews the literature on sensory phenomena in tic disorders and highlights possible connections to TS symptoms and directions for future research.
    08/2014; DOI:10.1007/s40474-014-0026-2
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    ABSTRACT: Tic disorders are childhood onset neuropsychiatric disorders characterized by motor and/or vocal tics. Research has demonstrated that children with chronic tics (including Tourette syndrome and Chronic Tic Disorder: TS/CTD) can suppress tics, particularly when an immediate, contingent reward is given for successful tic suppression. As a diagnosis of TS/CTD requires tics to be present for at least one year, children in these tic suppression studies had been living with tics for quite some time. Thus, it is unclear whether the ability to inhibit tics is learned over time or present at tic onset. Resolving that issue would inform theories of how tics develop and how behavior therapy for tics works. We investigated tic suppression in school-age children as close to the time of tic onset as possible, and no later than six months after onset. Children were asked to suppress their tics both in the presence and absence of a contingent reward. Results demonstrated that these children, like children with TS/CTD, have some capacity to suppress tics, and that immediate reward enhances that capacity. These findings demonstrate that the modulating effect of reward on inhibitory control of tics is present within months of tic onset, before tics have become chronic
    Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience 08/2014; 11. DOI:10.1016/j.dcn.2014.08.005 · 3.71 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Tourette syndrome is a childhood onset neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by multiple motor and vocal tics. Although many youth experience attenuation or even remission of tics in adolescence and young adulthood, some individuals experience persistent tics, which can be debilitating or disabling. Most patients also have 1 or more psychiatric comorbid disorders, such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder or obsessive-compulsive disorder. Treatment is multimodal, including both pharmacotherapy and cognitive-behavioral treatment, and requires disentanglement of tics and the comorbid symptoms.
    Psychiatric Clinics of North America 09/2014; 37(3):269-286. DOI:10.1016/j.psc.2014.05.001 · 2.13 Impact Factor


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Dec 8, 2014