What is coprolalia?

Coprolalia is a medical term to define one ofthe most complex symptomsof Tourette’s Syndrome, which consists of the patient’s involuntary compulsive use ofobscenities, socially inappropriate wordsor derogatory comments without malicious intent.

In this context, the patient suffering from Tourette’s Syndrome, suffers from this symptom occasionallybut when it occurs compulsively it is usually uncontrollable. Other manifestations of coprolalia are eschatological comments, pointing to genital parts especially in socially crowded areas.

Note: Thanks to scientific advances, the thesis is now accepted by the medical community that coprolaliais a physical and neurological symptomby nature of Tourette Syndrome.

Why does coprolalia occur?

The causes of coprolalia, are given byneurological damagecaused by different pathologies such as those mentioned below:

1. Tourette’s Syndrome

People suffering from Tourette Syndrome are characterized by Making repetitive movements and unwanted sounds (tics), which cannot be controlled by the patient and it is a pathology that has no cure.

To highlight: Some Scientific ArticlesRelate the symptom of coprolalia to Tourette’s Syndrome.

2. Obsessive compulsive disorder

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is characterized in the patient by presenting a pattern of unwanted thoughts and fears called obsessions , which cause repetitive behaviors called compulsionstag. These manifestations deteriorate the quality of life of the individual.

You should know: Scientific articles report the appearance of coprolalia in those cases of OCD.

3. Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is a serious mental illness, which affects the way a person thinks, feels and behaves and seems to have lost touch with reality, which deteriorates their quality of life and that of their family environment. (6)

It should be noted that coprolalia is not a predominant symptom in schizophrenia , however, this neurological pathology can cause various behavioral disorders, including this one.

Note: There are also other vocal tic behaviors such as palilalia , logoclonia , apraxia of speech, Echolalia , or echopraxia that can be associated with coprolalia.

4. Injuries and strokes

Injuries and cerebrovascular accidents severely damage many brain areas whose consequences can generate behavioral disorders that manifest involuntarily in the patient.

To highlight: Certain Scientific Researchindicates the presence of coprolalia in patients with cerebrovascular accident.

How is the treatment for coprolalia?

Depending on the origin of coprolalia, there are some strategies that can mitigate its effects, among which are:

1. Psychological therapy

If the origin of coprolalia is associated with pathologies that trigger behavioral disorders in the patient, an intervention through psychological therapy is appropriate.

You should know: General psychology as a science has several techniques applied in psychological therapies, which can resolve the underlying pathology behind coprolalia, favoring its correction.

In this sense, the therapist will require the necessary information from their relatives to design an intervention strategy, adapted to the needs and characteristics of the patient.

2. Botulinum toxin

Tourette’s Syndrome has been treated in recent years with Botulinum toxin injections , with the aim of correcting motor and phonic tics by weakening their activation mechanism , helping to correct coprolalia.

Note: This practice is still under study, as there are some incompatibilities regarding its effectiveness.

3. Relaxation techniques

Another recommended strategy in less severe cases is the application of relaxation techniques such as meditation or yoga, which help balance brain chemistry and promote states of mental relaxation.

To highlight: Echolalia and coprolalia belong to the group of symptoms that affect speech, however their manifestations are different.

Key Conclusions

  • Coprolalia is a term used in medicine to identify a characteristic symptom of Tourette Syndrome.
  • It is characterized by the compulsive and involuntary use of the patient to utter obscenities or socially inappropriate words.
  • Coprolalia can also be caused by brain injuries, schizophrenia, and obsessive-compulsive disorders.
  • Coprolalia is currently a physical and neurological symptom by nature of Tourette’s Syndrome.

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