Shock Therapy May Tamp Down Overactive Connection Between Two Parts Of Brain.

Bloomberg News (3/20, Lopatto) reports, “Shock therapy, in use since 1937, appears to tamp down an overactive connection between two parts of the brain involved in emotional processing, thinking and concentration, according to a study released…by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.” Shock therapy “mimics a seizure, sending a brief electric current to the brain. ECT has the strongest supporting data among treatments for patients whose depression doesn’t respond to medication, according to the American Psychiatric Association.”

HealthDay (3/20, Storrs) reports that investigators “used functional MRI scans to look at brain activity in nine adults with severe depression before and after electroshock therapy.” The researchers “found that electroshock, or electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), dampens the connections between different areas of the brain in depressed people.” Also covering the story are Reuters (3/20, Kelland), BBC News (3/20), and the UK’s Daily Mail (3/20, Allen).

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— “Shock Therapy’s Effect on Depression Discovered, Researchers Say,”Elizabeth Lopatto, Bloomberg, March 19, 2012.

Posted in In The News.