Introduction Tourette's syndrome (TS) affects approximately 1% of children. This study will determine the efficacy and safety of paired comprehensive behavioural intervention for tics (CBIT) plus repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) treatment in children with Tourette's syndrome. We hypothesise that CBIT and active rTMS to the supplementary motor area (SMA) will (1) decrease tic severity, and (2) be associated with changes indicative of enhanced neuroplasticity (eg, changes in in vivo metabolite concentrations and TMS neurophysiology measures). Methods and analysis This study will recruit 50 youth with TS, aged 6-18 for a phase II, double-blind, block randomised, sham-controlled trial comparing active rTMS plus CBIT to sham rTMS plus CBIT in a 1:1 ratio. The CBIT protocol is eight sessions over 10 weeks, once a week for 6 weeks and then biweekly. The rTMS protocol is 20 sessions of functional MRI-guided, low-frequency (1 Hz) rTMS targeted to the bilateral SMA over 5 weeks (weeks 2-6). MRI, clinical and motor assessments and neurophysiological evaluations including motor mapping will be performed 1 week before CBIT start, 1 week after rTMS treatment and 1 week after CBIT completion. The primary outcome measure is Tourette's symptom change from baseline to post-CBIT treatment, as measured by the Yale Global Tic Severity Scale. Secondary outcomes include changes in imaging, neurophysiological and behavioural markers. Ethics and dissemination Ethical approval by the Conjoint Health Research Ethics Board (REB18-0220). The results of this study will be published in peer-reviewed scientific journals, on ClinicalTrials.gov and shared with the Tourette and OCD Alberta Network. The results will also be disseminated through the Alberta Addictions and Mental Health Research Hub. Trial registration NCT03844919.
- child & adolescent psychiatry
- developmental neurology & neurodisability
- paediatric neurology
- protocols & guidelines
ASJC Scopus subject areas