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NY Times Article on Canadian Study of Medical Safety of ECT

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From the New York Times, September 21, 2021: The link to the article is: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/14/well/ect-therapy-depression.html And from the "Comments": ECT literally saved my Mother's life. She had stopped eating, was extremely paranoid, angry and slowly starving herself to death. I will be eternally grateful to her hospitalist who suggested that we try this treatment. While we were hesitant to prolong her suffering, the knowledge that our grandmother, her own mother had ECT more than 50 years ago and brought her back from the brink gave us the courage to try it. The results of my Mom's treatment was extraordinary--we were told it may take 5-6 treatments before she had interest in eating but after 1-2 treatments she was sending my sister out for Japanese noodles. After the completion of 12 treatments, she had totally returned to herself. She has no memory of those weeks in the hospital, which given the grave circumstances is a blessing. I am

ECT in Refractory OCD: New Study From China is Uninterpretable

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Out on PubMed, from researchers in China, is this study:  Effect of modified  electroconvulsive  therapy on neuro metabolites and magnetic resonance spectroscopy imaging signals in patients with refractory obsessive-compulsive disorder. Liu D, Liang R, Bai S, Lan B, Liu G, Wang D, Yuan S, Sun W, Li G. J Affect Disord. 2021 Oct 10:S0165-0327(21)01074-0. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2021.10.005. Online ahead of print. PMID:  34644618 The abstract is copied below: Objective: This study was aimed to investigate the effect of modified electroconvulsive therapy (MECT) on neurometabolites and magnetic resonance spectroscopy imaging (MRSI) signals in patients with refractory obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Methods: From January 2018 to January 2020, 64 patients with OCD consecutively treated in the Psychiatric Department of our hospital were randomly divided into a study group treated with MECT and a control group treated with drugs alone. The obsessive-compulsive state, anxiety and depression, MRS

Thyroid Augmentation and Genetics in ECT: Pilot Study From the Mayo Clinic

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 From investigators at the Mayo Clinic is this paper: The abstract is copied below: The pdf is here . This is a fascinating paper about thyroid augmentation of ECT and genetic variation influencing thyroid function. The study is small, the data are old (from 2008-2011) and the limitations many; nonetheless the paper rekindles the interest in T3 as an accelerator and augmenter of ECT. I have long believed that the older thyroid data from Robert Stern and colleagues were very encouraging, and that it was unfortunate that they were never adequately followed up. At the very least, this paper teaches us about thyroid metabolism and the enzymes thyroid deiodinase types I and II. I highly recommend a full read of this paper for anyone interested in the thyroid axis and depression and/or pharmacological augmentation strategies in ECT, ~ 20 minutes.

Management of 2 Cases of Prolonged Seizure: Report From Singapore

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Out on PubMed, from investigators in Singapore, is this report:  Selecting right unilateral placement to facilitate continuation of electroconvulsive therapy following prolonged seizures. Goh SE, Tor PC. Asian J Psychiatr. 2021 Sep 29;66:102874. doi: 10.1016/j.ajp.2021.102874. Online ahead of print. PMID:  34624745 The abstract is copied below: Available literature remains limited in the identification of risk factors for prolonged seizures in electroconvulsive therapy and much less is reported about the continuation of electroconvulsive therapy after prolonged seizures. We describe two cases with prolonged seizures early in their course of electroconvulsive therapy and the subsequent adjustment made that allowed for safe and effective continuation of electroconvulsive therapy. In both cases, right unilateral electroconvulsive therapy was continued at a suprathreshold stimulus dose of six times relative to seizure threshold. Both patients continued their course of electroconvulsive the

Commentary on ECT and Cognition in the Asian Journal of Psychiatry

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Not on PubMed, but nonetheless in the Asian Journal of Psychiatry,  from authors in Kuwait, is this commentary: As far as I can tell, the authors wanted to publish this for the cutesy (and incomprehensible) title. While I myself have been guilty of the cutesy title, at least I always tried to back it up with substantive content. This commentary is a mishmash of "facts" and factoids about ECT and cognition, with some mechanism-of-action allusions thrown in. But we rarely get ECT publications from Kuwait, so I will give the authors some kudos for trying, and assume only the best of educational intentions.

ECT Review From Romania

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 Out on PubMed, from authors in Romania, is this review: Efficacy of electroconvulsive therapy as a potential first-choice treatment in treatment-resistant depression (Review). Trifu S, Sevcenco A, Stănescu M, Drăgoi AM, Cristea MB. Exp Ther Med. 2021 Nov;22(5):1281. doi: 10.3892/etm.2021.10716. Epub 2021 Sep 9. PMID:  34630636 The abstract is copied below: Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a technique that has been used since 1938 to treat several psychiatric disorders as a replacement for chemically induced seizures. Despite its history of stigma, controversy and low accessibility, ECT is found to be beneficial and efficient in severe cases of depression where medication fails to bring results. Titration tables developed over time, based on evidenced-based medicine, have made this treatment technique safe and, in some cases, the first choice of treatment. The aim of the review was to summarize the research conducted on the efficacy of ECT on major depressive disorder and variables s

ECT in Patients Aged 16-30: Data From the Harvard Group

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 Out on PubMed, from the Harvard group, is this paper: The Efficacy and Cognitive Effects of Acute Course Electroconvulsive Therapy Are Equal in Adolescents, Transitional Age Youth, and Young Adults. Luccarelli J, McCoy TH, Uchida M, Green A, Seiner SJ, Henry ME. J Child Adolesc Psychopharmacol. 2021 Oct 6. doi: 10.1089/cap.2021.0064. Online ahead of print. PMID:  34619038 The abstract is copied below: Objective: Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is the most effective acute treatment for depression, but its use in younger patients is rare and heavily regulated in many U.S. states. It is unclear whether age modifies treatment response or tolerability in adolescents, transitional age youth, and young adults. We examined the effects of ECT on depression and cognition in patients aged 16-30 years. Methods: A retrospective cohort study of patients aged 16-30 years receiving ECT between 2011 and 2020 who were evaluated with the Quick Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology (QIDS), the Behavior