Improving Tic-related Response Inhibition: Comparing the effects of Methylphenidate to Placebo in Children and Adolescents with ADHD and Chronic Tic Disorders

Grant Type
Grant Year
Institution Location
Institution Organization Name
University of Wisconsin
Investigators Name
Woods, Douglas, PhD

Children with Tourette’s disorder (TD) can learn to manage their tics through behavioral reinforcement. Habit Reversal Training (HRT) is a behavioral treatment for TD that is currently being studied in several US centers. Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is common in children who have TD. It is possible that children who have ADHD and tics may be less responsive to behavioral intervention because it is difficult for them to pay attention and focus on the behavioral techniques. Stimulants seem to be the most effective medications for treating ADHD symptoms in children and adolescents. Our study is designed to explore the question of whether stimulant medication when compared to placebo (a pill of similar appearance but without the medication) will improve tic suppression using behavioral reinforcement. Our hypothesis is that stimulant medication will be more effective than placebo in helping children with both ADHD and TD suppress their tics using HRT because the medication will enable them to improve their attentional functioning. Our study could have important implications for future treatment of children with both ADHD and TD. Douglas Woods, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI Barbara Coffey, M.D., M.S., New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY F. Xavier Castellanos, M.D., New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY Gholson Lyon, M.D., Ph.D., New York University Child Study Center, New York, NY Award: $75,000 This Award is funded by Alisa Yaffa and Ken McElvain Tourette Association of America Inc. – Research Grant Award 2008-2009