Which physical findings are characteristic of dystonic tics Tourette syndrome (TS) and other tic disorders?

Updated: May 30, 2019
  • Author: William C Robertson, Jr, MD; Chief Editor: Stephen L Nelson, Jr, MD, PhD, FAACPDM, FAAN, FAAP  more...
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Dystonic tics refer to repeated movements that resemble fragments of childhood-onset generalized dystonia. An example is one of the authors' patients, a man with lifelong mild motor and vocal tics who when 45 years old developed typical blepharospasm (involuntary squeezing of the eyelids). After 2 years, the blepharospasm remitted while other tics predominated, only to recur after a year or so.

This name also has been used to describe simpler nonclonic tics that alternatively, perhaps more aptly, have been called tonic tics. These are common, and examples include 1- to 5-second isometric contractions at the shoulders or repeated tensing of the abdominal muscles.

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