But despite obscene outbursts being Hollywood's go-to depiction of Tourette's sufferers, this particular symptom really only shows up in about 10 percent of them. Tourette's manifests in childhood as a series of tics -- think blinking, twitching, clearing your throat, et cetera. And for most people, it becomes less pronounced or goes away in their late teens. Of the minority who suffer from coprolalia -- the medical term for turning into Gordon Ramsay without warning -- many are able to deal with it by mumbling curse words when in public or simply repeating them in their mind. You know, like everyone else on the planet.
Even in the worst cases, coprolalia usually presents itself as single-word outbursts, not complex strings of f**k-words straight out of an erotic novel. For Hollywood, though, the awkwardness of having someone scream random vulgarities is just so much funnier than uncontrollable blinking or watching a young child commit self-harm, so we get scenes like this one instead:
Oh, Amy. This is beneath you. (You're good, Rob.)
Occasionally, movies do attempt to get it right. Like when The Boondock Saints made sure to give Doc some realistic blinking and stuttering ... only to put the man smack dab in the middle of a nun-filled hospital so he could offend their nunnish sensibilities with his swearing. So, points for trying, we guess?