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Volume 5 Issue 3 (August 2002), Pages iii-iii, 265-396

Transcranial magnetic stimulation in child psychiatry: disturbed motor system excitability in hypermotoric syndromes (pages 381-391)

Abstract

Normal development and dysfunctions of motor system excitability can be investigated in vivo by means of single‐ and paired‐pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). While different TMS‐parameters show different developmental time courses between 8 and 16 years of age, distinct dysfunctional patterns of motor system excitability can be demonstrated in child psychiatric disorders with hypermotoric behavior: in tic disorder, a shortened cortical silent period can be stated providing evidence for deficient inhibitory mechanisms within the sensorimotor loop, probably primarily at the level of the basal ganglia. In attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), a decreased intracortical inhibition indicates deficient inhibitory mechanisms within the motor cortex (but enhancement of intracortical inhibition after oral intake of 10 mg methylphenidate). In children with comorbid ADHD and tic disorder, the findings of a reduced intracortical inhibition as well as a shortened cortical silent period provide evidence for additive effects at the level of motor system excitability. Thus, TMS allows us to obtain substantial insight into both the normal development and the neurobiological basis of hypermotoric syndromes in child psychiatry.

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