OBJECTIVE: Tourette syndrome (TS) can increase the likelihood of social and emotional difficulties which may shape an individual's personality and self-perception. We investigated personality and affect in patients with TS.
METHODS: Twenty-five adults with TS (2 with co-morbid obsessive compulsive disorder, 4 with co-morbid attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and 4 with both co-morbidities), who were not clinically depressed, and 25 matched controls participated in the study. They completed the Ten-Item Personality Index, the Positive and Negative Affect Scale and the Beck Depression Inventory.
RESULTS: Adults with TS exhibited no differences from controls in reported emotional experience or depressive symptoms but did differ for four of the five assessed personality dimensions; extraversion, conscientiousness, openness and emotional stability. Individuals with pure TS (who had no co-morbid conditions) exhibited reduced extraversion and emotional stability compared to controls. Personality scores were not related to tic severity, yet lower emotional stability scores were associated with higher ratings of negative affect.
CONCLUSIONS: This study is limited by a restricted sample in terms of size and source. However, our findings indicate that in the absence of depression and common co-morbidities, people with TS differ from controls in indices of personality, which are linked to negative affectivity.
- Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity/complications
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder/complications
- Personality Inventory
- Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
- Severity of Illness Index
- Tourette Syndrome/complications