Shock Therapy Depression

March 20, 2012 by staff 

Shock Therapy Depression, While “shock therapy” has been used in psychiatry for more than 70 years, researchers had little idea how the controversial treatment worked to treat depression. Now, scientists say they may have solved the mystery.

The therapy, which provides electrical stimulation to the brain and is extremely effective in treating severe depression, appears to affect how brain areas communicate with each other. It relieves “over-communication” in the brain that may make it difficult for people with depression to think and concentrate, said study researcher Jennifer Perrin, a mental health researcher at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland.

“We believe we’ve solved a 70-year-old therapeutic riddle,” said study researcher Ian Reid, a psychiatrist at the university.

By understanding how the treatment, properly known today as electroconvulsive therapy(ECT), works, researchers may one day be able to replace it with something that has a lower risk of side effects, but is just as effective, Perrin said. However, such a replacement treatment is a long way off, she said.

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