Per Hove Thomsen

Predictors of therapeutic treatment outcome in adolescent chronic tic disorders

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Chronic tic disorders may have a major impact on a child's function. A significant effect has been shown for combined habit reversal training (HRT) and exposure response prevention (ERP) treatment delivered in an individual and group setting.


The present study examines predictors and moderators of treatment outcome after an acute therapeutic intervention.


Fifty-nine children and adolescents were randomised to manualised treatment combining HRT and ERP as individual or group training. Age, gender, baseline tic severity, Premonitory Urge for Tics Scale (PUTS) scores, Beliefs about Tic Scale (BATS) scores, hypersensitivity and comorbid psychiatric symptoms were analysed as predictors of outcome. The same characteristics were examined as moderators for individual versus group treatment. Outcome measures included the change in total tic severity (TTS) score and functional impairment score (as measured by the Yale Global Tic Severity Scale (YGTSS)).


Internalising symptoms predicted a lesser decrease in functional impairment. The occurrence of obsessive-compulsive symptoms predicted a larger decrease in TTS. Baseline hypersensitivity and high scores on depressive symptoms favoured individual treatment. High baseline PUTS scores favoured group therapy.


This is the first study examining factors predicting and moderating perceived functional impairment following a therapeutic intervention. The study adds to the knowledge on predictors and moderators of TTS. Furthermore, this is the first study examining the effect of the BATS score. The study points towards factors that may influence treatment outcome and that require consideration when choosing supplemental treatment. This applies to comorbid anxiety and depressive symptoms, and to the child's belief about their tics and premonitory urge.

TidsskriftBJPsych Open
Antal sider6
StatusUdgivet - sep. 2019

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