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Pediatrics. 1991 Jun;87(6):936-42.

Peer problems in Tourette's disorder.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia, Canada.


To explore the social adjustment and peer relationships of children with Tourette's disorder, 29 patients with mild to moderate Tourette's disorder were studied. Children underwent neuropsychological testing. The patients completed self-esteem scales and their parents and teachers completed behavior rating scales. Peer relationships were examined with the Pupil Evaluation Inventory, which is a sociometric questionnaire completed by the child's classmates and provides measures of aggression, withdrawal, and likability. As a group, Tourette's disorder patients were significantly more withdrawn, more aggressive, and less popular than their classmates. Thirty-five percent of the children with Tourette's disorder received the lowest rating in the class on one or more of the Pupil Evaluation Inventory factors. These social problems were not predicted by the frequency or duration of tics. A clinical diagnosis of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and teachers' ratings on the summary scale of the Child Behavior Checklist and the Pupil Evaluation Inventory did predict poor adjustment. It is concluded that social adjustment is a major difficulty for many children with Tourette's disorder, irrespective of tic severity.

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