Electroconvulsive Therapy History

Electroconvulsive Therapy History

When was electroconvulsive therapy first used?

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is used to treat patients with certain types of mental illness, including severe depression, severe mania, and catatonia. It was first developed in the late 1930s, with the first recorded treatments at McLean Hospital taking place in 1941.

Who invented electroconvulsive therapy?

This paper focuses on the development of ECT by Ugo Cerletti and Lucio Bini at the Clinic for Nervous and Mental Disorders in Rome in 1938. The first electroshock treatment with humans is discussed in detail and the export of ECT to North America is described.

How did electroconvulsive therapy start?

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), one of the oldest treatment methods in the field of psychiatry, was first introduced 80 years ago in Rome when Ugo Cerletti and Lucio Bini used an electric current to elicit an epileptic seizure for therapeutic purposes[1].

When did they stop electroshock therapy?

The use of ECT declined until the 1980s, “when use began to increase amid growing awareness of its benefits and cost-effectiveness for treating severe depression”.

Why is electroconvulsive therapy used?

Why it’s done

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) can provide rapid, significant improvements in severe symptoms of several mental health conditions. ECT is used to treat: Severe depression, particularly when accompanied by detachment from reality (psychosis), a desire to commit suicide or refusal to eat.

Why is ECT so controversial?

Reasons for Controversy

Three reasons are given for the aversion: 1) ECT is considered old-fashioned and politically incorrect; 2) it is forced on the patient; and 3) the memory disturbances are so severe and persistent that no rational human being would undergo this procedure, no matter how well-intended.

What is electroconvulsive therapy NHS?

Electro-convulsive therapy (ECT) is a physical treatment carried out under a general anaesthetic. A stimulus is passed across the brain for a few seconds to produce a small artificial seizure which affects the brain, including the parts that control thinking, mood, appetite and sleep.

Why is ECT unethical?

ECT is not safe: it produces varying amounts of memory loss and other adverse effects on cognition in nearly everyone who receives it, typically lasting weeks or months after the last treatment (as well as many other adverse consequences, from ocular effects to postictal psychosis).

Why was shock therapy used in asylums?

Shock Therapies

Brought to the United States by Manfred Sakel, a German neurologist, insulin shock therapy injected high levels of insulin into patients to cause convulsions and a coma. After several hours, the living dead would be revived from the coma, and thought cured of their madness.

Who is ECT Not recommended for?

Do not use electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) routinely for people with moderate depression but consider it if their depression has not responded to multiple drug treatments and psychological treatment.

What does ECT do to the brain?

It may promote changes in how brain cells communicate with each other at synapses and it may stimulate the development of new brain cells. ECT may flood the brain with neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine, which are known to be involved in conditions like depression and schizophrenia.

Can ECT cause brain damage?

The review of literature and present evidence suggests that ECT has a demonstrable impact on the structure and function of the brain. However, there is a lack of evidence at present to suggest that ECT causes brain damage.

Is electroconvulsive therapy legal in UK?

If you are detained under the Mental Health Act 1983, ECT can normally only be given if you consent to it and your approved clinician or a second opinion appointed doctor (SOAD) certifies that you’ve consented, and that you have capacity to do so.

Is electroconvulsive therapy legal?

It is legal in the United States, though it’s illegal to give it to patients younger than 16 in Texas and Colorado. In some cases, with the permission of courts, doctors can force very sick patients to get ECT. One of the more serious side effects of ECT is memory loss.

How is ECT performed today?

With ECT, electrodes are placed on the patient’s scalp and a finely controlled electric current is applied while the patient is under general anesthesia. The current causes a brief seizure in the brain. ECT is one of the fastest ways to relieve symptoms in severely depressed or suicidal patients.

Is electroconvulsive therapy used for schizophrenia?

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a remarkably effective treatment for major depressive disorder, but is less commonly utilized for treatment of psychotic disorders. Recent literature indicates that ECT can be a useful strategy for a wide range of psychotic disorders, including treatment-resistant schizophrenia.

Do you have to shave your head for ECT?

During surgery prep, you’ll have your head shaved. You may be kept unconscious throughout brain surgery with general anesthesia or stay awake with a local anesthetic used on your scalp. A sturdy frame will hold your head to prevent movement during surgery.

Why is ECT a last resort?

The seizure is induced in a very controlled fashion, using a fairly precise delivery of an electric current. Dr Davey says ECT is seen as a treatment option of last resort, to be used when nothing else has worked, or when there isn’t time to find the right medication for a patient, a process that can take months.

Is ECT worth the risk?

Risk Assessment of Electroconvulsive Therapy in Clinical Routine: A 3-Year Analysis of Life-Threatening Events in More Than 3,000 Treatment Sessions. Background: Extensive research has reported that electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) can be highly effective in approximately 80% of patients suffering from depression.

Is electroconvulsive therapy moral?

Results. ECT research is ethically justified and should always continue to be conducted with the highest ethical standards. ECT research entails few ethical peculiarities such as involving multiple sessions were capacity to consent can change. It would be unethical not to conduct ECT research.

Can MDD be cured?

There’s no cure for depression, but there are lots of effective treatments. People can recover from depression and live long and healthy lives.

Is ECT good for anxiety?

Electroconvulsive therapy is effective in the acute treatment of major depressive disorder patients associated with anxiety symptoms. Anxiety symptoms improved less than depression symptoms during acute electroconvulsive therapy.

What are the two most common treatments for clinical depression?

There are many types of therapy available. Three of the more common methods used in depression treatment include cognitive behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy, and psychodynamic therapy. Often, a blended approach is used.

Is ECT cruel?

But while it was preferable to the chemical alternative, ECT could still be, by many accounts, cruel. The seizures could lead patients to thrash about wildly and even break bones, and was generally an extremely unpleasant experience, Sadowsky said.

Does ECT cause memory loss?

Many people experience memory loss after having ECT. Some people find this only lasts for a short time and their memories gradually return as they recover from ECT.

Can I smoke before ECT?

Before Your Procedure

Because electroconvulsive therapy is performed under general anesthesia, you should not eat, drink, or smoke after midnight on the days of your treatments. Do not drink alcohol or use any illegal drugs over the course of the treatment.

How were mentally ill treated in the 1930s?

The use of certain treatments for mental illness changed with every medical advance. Although hydrotherapy, metrazol convulsion, and insulin shock therapy were popular in the 1930s, these methods gave way to psychotherapy in the 1940s. By the 1950s, doctors favored artificial fever therapy and electroshock therapy.

How were the mentally ill treated in the 1700s?

In the 18th century, some believed that mental illness was a moral issue that could be treated through humane care and instilling moral discipline. Strategies included hospitalization, isolation, and discussion about an individual’s wrong beliefs.

How did they treat mental illness in the 1900s?

In the following centuries, treating mentally ill patients reached all-time highs, as well as all-time lows. The use of social isolation through psychiatric hospitals and insane asylums, as they were known in the early 1900s, were used as punishment for people with mental illnesses.

Can ECT cause psychosis?

A common cause of psychotic symptoms such as hallucination, delusions and thought disorder after ECT may also occur in the course of delirium-type impaired consciousness [1013].

Can ECT make you worse?

ECT may have a role in people who have comorbid depression and anxiety. The concern of some psychiatrists is that while ECT may help with depressive symptoms, it could worsen anxiety symptoms, including obsessional thoughts or panic attacks.

What is the success rate of ECT?

What is the Success Rate of Electroconvulsive Therapy? ECT is an effective medical treatment option, helping as many as 80-85 percent of patients who receive it. Most patients remain well for many months afterwards.

How do you feel after ECT?

After the Procedure

When you awaken, you may experience a period of disorientation lasting from a few minutes to several hours. Headaches, jaw pain, and muscle soreness may occur. ECT requires a series of treatments, often initiated two to three times a week for a few weeks and then the frequency is tapered down.

What happens when ECT doesn’t work?

If nothing else has helped, including ECT, and you are still severely depressed, you may be offered neurosurgery for mental disorder (NMD), deep brain stimulation (DBS) or vagus nerve stimulation (VNS).

Does ECT produce grand mal seizures?

Stated simply: ECT is the application of a small amount of electricity (electro-) to the human brain to generate a brief grand-mal seizure (convulsive).

Does UK still use ECT 2021?

But for a group of the most severely depressed patients, ECT has remained one of the last options on the table when other therapies have failed. Annually in the UK around 4,000 patients, of which John is one, still undergo ECT.

Is ECT still used in NZ?

There are strict criteria for use of ECT in New Zealand, but ECT achieves complete remission for 7 out of 10 people who have this treatment. There are strict criteria for prescribing ECT in New Zealand. They include: not improving after trying two different types of antidepressant medication.

What states do ECT?

Results: State regulation on ECT widely varied from none to stringent requirements. There were 6 states without any laws pertaining to ECT. California, Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, New York, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas were noted to be the most regulatory on ECT.

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