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Electroshock (ECT)

Electroshock (ECT)

Electroshock treatment (ECT) was developed in 1938 at a time that lobotomy and insulin coma therapy were already in use. Pioneer advocates of ECT openly admitted that it caused irreversible brain damage. In 1979 Dr. Breggin published the first medical book critical of ECT, Electroshock: Its Brain-Disabling Effects (New York: Springer Publishing Company). Dr. Breggin has advocated the banning of ECT, but it continues to be used extensively in most psychiatric facilities. In 1985 Dr. Breggin presented as the scientific expert on the brain-damaging effects of the treatment at the NIH Consensus Development Conference on ECT. In 2005 he was the medical expert in the first-ever malpractice victory against a doctor who referred his patient for ECT.

The best source of information on ECT memory loss and brain damage can be found in a chapter in Dr. Breggin’s book Brain-Disabling Treatments in Psychiatry. Many of Dr. Breggin’s articles on ECT can be found in his ECT Resources Center.


The FDA should test the safety of ECT machines (2010)

Jul 13, 2010 |

International Journal of Risk & Safety in Medi...

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Electroshock therapy and brain damage

Jan 14, 2008 |

"Electroshock therapy and brain damage: the acute ...

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ECT Damages the Brain: Disturbing News (2007)

Oct 24, 2007 |

"ECT Damages the Brain: Disturbing News for Patien...

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The Cognitive Effects of Electroconvulsive Therapy in Community Settings

Mar 18, 2007 |

Despite ongoing controversy, there has never been ...

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Electroshock: Scientific, Ethical, & Political Issues (1998)

Jan 01, 1998 |

Breggin, PR. (1998). International Journal of Ris...

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The return of ECT (1992)

Jan 29, 1992 |

Readings: A Journal of Reviews and Comentary in Me...

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Neuropathology and cognitive dysfunction from ECT (1986)

Jan 01, 1986 |

Psychopharmacology Bulletin 22:476-479, 1986. ...

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Neuropathology and Cognitive Dysfunction From ECT (1985)

Jan 01, 1985 |

Electroconvulsive Therapy, Consensus Development C...

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Electroshock therapy and brain damage: the acute organic brain syndrome as treatment (1984)

Jan 01, 1984 |

Behavior and Brain Sciences 7:24-25, 1984. electr...

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Disabling the brain with electroshock (1981)

Feb 01, 1981 |

Divergent Views in Psychiatry, M. Dongier and E. W...

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