Self-injurious behaviour and the Gilles de la Tourette syndrome: a clinical study and review of the literature

Psychol Med. 1989 Aug;19(3):611-25. doi: 10.1017/s0033291700024211.


Thirty (33%) of 90 patients with the Gilles de la Tourette syndrome exhibited self-injurious behaviour. Fourteen were head bangers, of whom two had cavum septum pellucidum. Clinical correlates of self-injury were the severity of Gilles de la Tourette syndrome symptoms and psychopathology, with special reference to obsessionality and hostility. We discuss an additional patient who died from a subdural haematoma as a result of head banging, and three who had permanent vision impairment from self inflicted eye injuries.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Self Mutilation / diagnosis
  • Self Mutilation / psychology*
  • Stereotyped Behavior
  • Tourette Syndrome / diagnosis
  • Tourette Syndrome / psychology*