Category Archives: Risks

ECT: the new Royal College leaflet

The Royal College of Psychiatrists has just (July 2020) produced its latest patient information leaflet on electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). For over a year the page has been blank, although earlier versions of the leaflet (1993 or 2005) still appear on … Continue reading

Posted in ECT in the UK, ECT without consent, Miscellaneous, Risks | 2 Comments

ECT in Ontario

In my last post I mentioned a fairly recent survey from Ontario, Canada, that looked at how many people died or suffered serious illnesses or injuries following electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). The results were published in Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica¬†2017 (volume 136 … Continue reading

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ECT: broken bones are not entirely a thing of the past

You might think that the risk of broken bones during electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) has been overcome by the use of muscle paralysing drugs such as succinylcholine. To a large extent this is true, but not completely, as a letter in … Continue reading

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Cognition is not a team sport

Last year the journal Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica published an article by a group of Dutch and Belgian psychologists and psychiatrists about electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and cognitive function (J. Obbels, E. Verwijk et al., Long-term neurocognitive functioning after electroconvulsive therapy in … Continue reading

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ECT in the Mail on Sunday

On 24 February 2019 the Mail on Sunday ran an article about electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) with the headline “Controversial electric shock treatment for severe depression could cause permanent brain damage and ‘should be stopped’, leading expert warns”. The leading expert … Continue reading

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ECT in Belgium: a record number of treatments

The on-line journal Epilepsia Open has recently (December 2018) published an article by Caroline Schotte and colleagues at Leuven University, Belgium (“Development of temporal lobe epilepsy during maintenance electroconvulsive therapy: a case of human kindling?”). The authors describe the case … Continue reading

Posted in ECT worldwide, Risks | 8 Comments

ECT and dementia in Sweden

There are few long-term studies of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). But in Sweden a group of 55 people who received ECT at Lund University Hospital between 1976 and 1983 (all voluntary patients of one psychiatrist) were given various tests over the … Continue reading

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ECT in Worcester

On 22 February 2016 the Daily Mail ran an article about a doctor who was left damaged by electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) that she underwent at the Worcestershire Royal Hospital in 2004 and 2005. “The mother-of-three says her speech and mobility … Continue reading

Posted in ECT in the UK, Risks | 2 Comments

ECT at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Gateshead

On 11 March 2016 the Daily Mirror reported on an inquest into the death of a 71 year old woman who died following electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), given at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Gateshead. Elsie Tindle was deemed to lack capacity … Continue reading

Posted in ECT in the media, ECT in the UK, ECT without consent, Electrical parameters, Risks | 5 Comments

Two versions of ECT

The Royal College of Psychiatrists has recently published a leaflet on men and depression.¬†Men, it says, “seem to suffer from depression just as often as women, but they are less likely to ask for help.” There is a short section … Continue reading

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