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Tetrabenazine-induced oculogyric crisis – a rare complication in the treatment of Gilles de la Tourette syndrome

Authors Janik P, Figura M

Received 20 October 2015

Accepted for publication 30 November 2015

Published 25 February 2016 Volume 2016:12 Pages 497—499


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Roger Pinder

Piotr Janik,1 Monika Figura1,2

1Department of Neurology, Anna Gostynska Wolski Hospital, 2Department of Neurology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Medical University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland

Abstract: Tetrabenazine is used in the treatment of chorea, tardive dyskinesia, tics, and dystonia. It rarely causes acute eyeball dystonia and the description of this complication in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome is limited. We provide a description of an acute oculogyric crisis caused by tetrabenazine in a patient with severe tics. The patient had never developed acute dystonic reactions, although he was previously exposed to numerous dopamine receptor-blocking agents. After 8 days of therapy with tetrabenazine at a dose of 62.5 mg daily, the patient developed involuntary movement of the eyeballs. Withdrawal of tetrabenazine caused resolution of all symptoms after a week. The purpose of this description is to draw attention to the potential of tetrabenazine to induce acute oculogyric crisis as well as the difficulty of differentiating drug-induced dystonia from dystonic tics in patients with Gilles de la Tourette syndrome.

Keywords: acute dyskinesia, dystonic tics, eyeball dystonia, drug-induced dystonia, tic disorder, tetrabenazine-induced side effects

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