Does electroconvulsive therapy injure the brain?

Stephen H. Dinwiddie*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


In the decade or so after the introduction of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), scattered reports of neuropathological changes found among people who died after treatment began to appear. Such reports, combined with laboratory studies purporting to show neurological damage in experimental animals and the demonstration of memory changes (particularly retrograde amnesia) after ECT treatment, have suggested to some that ECT must somehow result in physical damage to the brain. Although such concerns still appear to influence popular attitudes toward ECT, use of modern technique does not appear to be commonly associated with any evidence of central nervous system damage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)148-151
Number of pages4
JournalPsychiatric Annals
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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