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Tourette Syndrome Diagnosis

When considering a diagnosis of Tourette syndrome, the doctor typically gathers a medical history and performs a physical exam. Imaging tests or blood tests may be recommended. These can help rule out other conditions that might be confused with Tourette syndrome. Confirmation usually comes after verifying that the person has had motor and vocal tics for at least one year.

How Is Tourette Syndrome Diagnosed?

In order to make a diagnosis of Tourette syndrome, your healthcare provider will ask a number of questions about:
 
  • The symptoms a person is experiencing
  • Any other medical conditions
  • Current medications
  • Family history of any medical conditions.
 
This information put together comprises a person's medical history. The healthcare provider will also perform a physical exam and may recommend certain tests.
 

Diagnosing Tourette Syndrome Through a Physical Exam

A Tourette syndrome diagnosis is made after verifying that the person has had both motor and vocal tics for at least one year. The existence of other neurological or psychiatric conditions can also help doctors arrive at a diagnosis.
 
Knowledgeable clinicians do not often misdiagnose common tics. However, atypical Tourette syndrome symptoms or atypical presentation (for example, onset of symptoms in adulthood) may require specific specialty expertise for a proper diagnosis of Tourette syndrome.
 

Are There Tests for Tourette Syndrome?

No blood or laboratory tests are needed to make a Tourette syndrome diagnosis, but imaging tests, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computerized tomography (CT), and electroencephalogram (EEG) scans, or certain blood tests may be used to rule out other conditions that might be confused with Tourette syndrome.
 
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Information About Tourette Syndrome

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