Tourette syndrome (TS) is a neurodevelopmental condition characterised by tics, which are stereotyped movements and/or vocalisations. Tics often cause difficulties in daily life and many with TS express a desire to reduce and/or gain control over them. No singular effective treatment exists for TS, and while pharmacological and behavioural interventions can be effective, the results are variable, and issues relating to access, availability and side effects can be barriers to treatment. Consequently, over the past decade, there has been increasing interest into the potential benefits of non-invasive brain stimulation (NIBS) approaches. This systematic review highlights work exploring NIBS as a potential treatment for TS. On balance, the results tentatively suggest that multiple sessions of stimulation applied over the supplementary motor area (SMA) may help to reduce tics. However, a number of methodological and theoretical issues limit the strength of this conclusion, with the most problematic being the lack of large-scale sham-controlled studies. In this review, methodological and theoretical issues are discussed, unanswered questions highlighted and suggestions for future work put forward.
Dyke, K., Jackson, G. M. & Jackson, S. R. (2021). Non-invasive brain stimulation as therapy: systematic review and recommendations with a focus on the treatment of Tourette syndrome. Experimental Brain Research, 240, pp. 341-363.
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