The future of tic disorder treatment

Shannon M. Bennett, Alex E. Keller, John T. Walkup

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Competing theories on the etiology and treatment of chronic tic disorders and Tourette syndrome have long made the search for efficacious intervention more challenging for patients and families seeking to reduce functional impairment related to tic symptoms. These symptoms were historically posited to be either psychological in origin, leading to the long tradition of psychoanalytic psychotherapy for tics, or biological in nature, particularly since the advent of successful treatments using neuroleptic medications. Current thinking about the phenomenology of tic disorders comes from growing empirical evidence as well as advances in neuroscience and genetics research and reveals a biological vulnerability that is exacerbated by physiological arousal related to environmental or interpersonal stress. This manuscript summarizes the evolution of this knowledge base and describes current best-practice recommendations for patients, families, and clinicians.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)32-39
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of the New York Academy of Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Behavior therapy
  • Psychopharmacology
  • Tic disorders
  • Tourette syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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