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How effective is electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) in treating depression?

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Studies have shown that ECT works for many people who have treatment-resistant depression. One study of 39 people with treatment-resistant depression compared the effects of an antidepressant with ECT. After 2-3 weeks, 71% of people who received ECT had a positive response to treatment. But only 28% who received the antidepressant had a positive response after 4 weeks of treatment.

SOURCES: American Psychiatric Association, , 2000. Cadieux, R.J., , December 1998. Compton M.T., , Psychiatry II, 2003. Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "Finding Peace of Mind: Treatment Strategies for Depression and Bipolar Disorder" and "Guide to Depression and Bipolar Disorder." Fochtmann, L.J. and Gelenberg, A.J., , Winter, 2005. Folkerts, H.W., , 1997. Glass R.M., , March 14, 2001. Keller, M.B., , 2005. Stimmel, G., , July 2002.








Practice Guideline for the Treatment of Patients with Major DepressionAmerican Family PhysicianACP MedicineFocusActa Psychiatrica ScandanaviaJAMAJournal of Clinical PsychiatryPsychiatric Times

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg on May 11, 2018

SOURCES: American Psychiatric Association, , 2000. Cadieux, R.J., , December 1998. Compton M.T., , Psychiatry II, 2003. Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "Finding Peace of Mind: Treatment Strategies for Depression and Bipolar Disorder" and "Guide to Depression and Bipolar Disorder." Fochtmann, L.J. and Gelenberg, A.J., , Winter, 2005. Folkerts, H.W., , 1997. Glass R.M., , March 14, 2001. Keller, M.B., , 2005. Stimmel, G., , July 2002.








Practice Guideline for the Treatment of Patients with Major DepressionAmerican Family PhysicianACP MedicineFocusActa Psychiatrica ScandanaviaJAMAJournal of Clinical PsychiatryPsychiatric Times

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg on May 11, 2018

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What is the most common side effect of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)?

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