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Behavioural Neurology
Volume 14 (2003), Issue 1-2, Pages 29-37

Disturbed Monitoring and Response Inhibition in patients with Gilles De La Tourette Syndrome and Co-Morbid Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Sandra Verena Müller,1 Sönke Johannes,1,2 Berdieke Wieringa,2 Axel Weber,2 Kirsten Müller-Vahl,3 Mike Matzke,4 Hans Kolbe,2 Reinhard Dengler,2 and Thomas F. Münte1

1Department of Clinical Neuropsychology, Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany
2Department of Neurology, Hannover Medical School, Germany
3Department of Clinical Psychiatry, Hannover Medical School, Germany
4Department of Neurology, Otto-von-Guericke-University of Magdeburg, Germany

Received 17 December 2002; Accepted 17 December 2002

Copyright © 2003 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective: Fronto-striatal dysfunction has been discussed as underlying symptoms of Tourette syndrome (TS) with co-morbid Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). This suggests possible impairments of executive functions in this disorder, which were therefore targeted in the present study.

Results: A comprehensive series of neuropsychological tests examining attention, memory and executive functions was performed in a group of 14 TS/OCD in co-occurrence with OCD patients and a matched control group.

Results: While attentional and memory mechanisms were not altered, TS/OCS patients showed deficits in executive functions predominately in the areas of response inhibition and action monitoring.

Conclusions: These findings provide further evidence for a substantial impairment of the frontal-striatal-thalamic-frontal circuit. We propose that the deficits in monitoring, error detection and response inhibition constitute the major impairment of TS/OCD patients in the cognitive domain.