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Tourettes Medication I Have Taken, and How It Affected Me

zyprexaI was diagnosed with Tourette’s Syndrome when I was a freshman in High School, although I didn’t go on any Tourettes medication until I was about to turn 20. My symptoms had finally progressed from annoying tics to some more injurious manifestations of an increasingly-frightening movement disorder.

Like most people in America who get ill, I agreed to take all the pills the doctors could throw at me. Unfortunately, there really is no Tourette’s medication that is designed specifically to treat it. The drugs are those that have shown some success, in some person, in some trial, in some place.

But I didn’t know any of that. They prescribed for yours truly:

  • Klonopin/Clonezepam: Used to treat panic attacks and certain types of seizures. This isn’t much of a stress and I hope it does truly help some people
  • Tetrabenazine: I reacted horribly to this. Shakes, sensitive skin, pain in my eardrums. It really freaked me out.
  • Zyprexa: This is an anti-psychotic used to treat Schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and more. This is the helpful little pill that made me balloon up to a non-svelte 265 in about 5 weeks. I was a chub.
  • Risperdal: Another anti-schizophrenia med.
  • A plain old-fashioned nicotine patch (I’m a non-smoker)

At best, a pill would help–or seem to help–for a couple of days, and then it was business as usual as far as tics. Most of them had no effect on me besides the side-effects. I was also tired, groggy, nauseated, freaked out, slowed down, or all of the above.

If I were a doctor I would probably experiment with pills and patients as well. Most of my neurologists said they had never seen a case as extreme as mine, so they wanted to tinker.

If I had known then what I know now, I would have said no to everything. But that’s the luxury of hindsight. Also, our bodies and chemistry are all unique, so maybe every single one of these drugs has done a world of good for some kid with Tourette’s.

I like to think that’s true. If it’s not…I’ve been there. It’s not pretty.


Comments on this entry are closed.

  • tyson November 29, 2011, 11:14 am

    ive pretty much had the same luck. i got diagnosed at 6 years old and im 22 now. its gotten better and worse over time. ive gone on and off meds, pretty much all of them had horrible side effects. going to the gym seemed to work better than any meds i have ever been on.

  • Jeanette Miller January 16, 2012, 9:33 pm

    You have enlightened on this topic. My husband has TS and we’ve been married 32 years and it has gotten worse ..he’s never taken meds for . You must be an amazing person. I’ll keep reading.

    • Josh Hanagarne January 17, 2012, 4:28 pm

      Thanks Jeanette. Please let me know if you think I can helpmyoubout with anything.

      • tracet gerry January 17, 2012, 6:12 pm

        Wow, i am on clonazapam and have been since i was 14 years old, after nodding off for 2 years on haldol. they put me on this, it had worked ok but for the last 3 months im twiching like mad and just am getting stressed out with it and when i asked my dr. for a med change she said i must just be overtired, ive been trying to research meds. for tourrettes but come up with some nasty stuff.. just dont know what to do..thank you for your great read on here very empowering!