This article reviews the published treatment outcome research on pharmacological and behavioral treatments for Gilles de la Tourette syndrome (TS). Controlled group outcome studies of pharmacological treatments show about a 50-60% reduction in tics with haloperidol and pimozide and about a 20% reduction with clonidine. A controlled group outcome study and several within-subject design studies of behavioral treatments show about a 90% reduction in tics with habit reversal training. A large number of case studies generally confirm these results and also show benefits from other behavioral treatments such as relaxation training, self-monitoring, and contingency management. Clinical limitations of TS drugs are that they produce side effects in 50-85% of the patients and require continuous use, and long-term compliance with the medications is limited. The primary limitation of behavioral treatments is that they require a large initial time commitment. The methodological strengths of the controlled drug studies are the use of double-blind and group designs. For the behavioral studies, the strengths are rigorous recording and controlled within-subject designs.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Psychology
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health