"Tourette Syndrome" by Alexander Schmit.

Essay by schmitalexHigh School, 10th gradeA+, September 2005

download word file, 4 pages 4.3

Tourette syndrome is a genetic neurological disorder that affects an individual person in and involuntary movements and unexpected vocalizations that are known as tics. In a few cases these vocalizations can include some random inappropriate words or phrases. These outbursts are unintentional and have no purpose. Involuntary movements are as the following: eye blinking, throat clearing, sniffing, arm thrusting, kicking movements, shoulder shrugging or jumping. The disorder affects all ethnic groups affecting men three to four times more than women. Most people with tourette syndrome lead productive lives in all professions.

Symptoms of tourette syndrome include having many motor and/or vocalization tics present at some time during the time of illness. The occurrence of tics continues for everyday throughout a span of over a year. The severity of tics changes periodically in frequency, type, and location. Symptoms of tics can disappear for weeks or even months at a time with reappearance of symptoms unknown.

Tics usually appear by the time a person reaches the age of 18. Most people with tics do have control over their tics to a certain degree, but only until they can express their symptoms somewhere they feel comfortable doing so. Tics symptoms generally increase as a result of increased tension or stress. This disorder can be classified from rather mild to quite severe. The majority of most people classified with tourette syndrome are categorized as having a mild case.

Causes of tics are unknown, but current research shows a pattern that the disorder comes from abnormal metabolism in dopamine, a brain chemical or neurotransmitter. Other neurotransmitters such as serotonin are involved.

Tourette syndrome is diagnosed by observing several symptoms and their history. No blood tests are performed to evaluate tourette syndrome, but a physician may want to perform a CAT scan, or other tests...