My 9yo son has been dx first with a chronic motor tic disorder, now with Tourettes due to the added vocal sounds. The tics have increased in frequency and intensity to the point he would hurt his neck. His neurologist (for 7 years) suggested an MRI, EKG, and EEG to check for seizure activity. My son as an infant would tighten his body, then it disappeared from the ages of 3 to 5 1/2. Now the full body tightening is back and he holds his breath and closes his eyes, this occurs for about 30 to 45 seconds. He has also had short term memory issues, where he will take something out to eat, place it on the table and walk away. He forgets that quickly. The MRI didn't show anything significant. The EKG looked abnormal to me (not officially read yet). During this EEG, the strobe light was used and my son's response was the full body tightening, shaking and holding his breath, for the whole time the strobe lights were on. When it was turned off, he stopped. This was scary and different than what I was used to seeing "normally".
Could my son have Tourettes and a Seizure disorder? Could he have had this his whole life undetected?
Please help, I am anxious and have to wait for official results for another 4 days.
How are you? Tourette syndrome or Gilles de la Tourette syndrome, is an inherited neuropsychiatric disorder with onset in childhood, characterized by the presence of multiple physical (motor) tics and at least one vocal (phonic) tic; these tics characteristically wax and wane. Tourette's is defined as part of a spectrum of tic disorders, which includes transient and chronic tics. Onset is before the age of 18.
There are no specific medical or screening tests that can be used in diagnosing Tourette's. The diagnosis is made based on observation of the individual's symptoms and family history, and after ruling out secondary causes of tic disorders. There is no requirement that other comorbid conditions (such as ADHD or OCD) be present, but if a physician believes that there may be another condition present that could explain tics, tests may be ordered as necessary to rule out that condition. An example of this is when diagnostic confusion between tics and seizure activity exists, which would call for an EEG, or if there are symptoms that indicate an MRI to rule out brain abnormalities.
So, it is better to see what the EEG report says. If there is no seizure activity reported in the EEG then it is to be considered that your child is suffering from Tourette’s syndrome.
The treatment of Tourette's focuses on identifying and helping the individual manage the most troubling or impairing symptoms. Most cases of Tourette's are mild, and do not require pharmacological treatment; instead, psychobehavioral therapy, education, and reassurance may be sufficient. Check the below link for further information.
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