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Valsamma Eapen | Understanding Tourette Syndrome

The symptoms can be misconstrued as deliberate, disruptive acts of a behaviourally challenged individual – and  Tourette’s can go undiagnosed. 

Valsamma Eapen

Despite being first recognised over 200 years ago, it took until 1980 for Tourette Syndrome to make it into the diagnostic manual for mental disorders – and it's still widely misunderstood today.  

Only a third of people with Tourette’s experience the uncontrolled swearing so commonly associated with the condition. A range of lesser-known, complex symptoms and comorbidities mean Tourette's can be easily overlooked by parents, teachers and even health professionals. 

In 10 minutes, child and adolescent psychiatrist Valsamma Eapen will bust the many myths about this widely misunderstood condition. By better understanding the symptoms, causes and rates of Tourette’s,  we can better understand the issues that those living with it face, and work to improve treatment options and outcomes to improve their quality of life.

Valsamma Eapen

Valsamma Eapen

Professor Valsamma Eapen is Chair of Infant, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at UNSW Sydney. Her work focuses on issues of early development and neurodevelopmental disorders including Tourette Syndrome and autism. Valsa heads the Academic Unit of Child Psychiatry South West Sydney (AUCS), and is the Stream Director of Early Life Determinants of Health (ELDoH) Clinical Academic Group, SPHERE. Her other areas of interest include improving equitable access to services and supports in the early years.

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