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March 1945

An Introduction to Physical Methods of Treatment in Psychiatry.

Arch NeurPsych. 1945;53(3):256. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1945.02300030093017

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This book, according to the authors, was written primarily for the student, the young psychiatric clinician, the general practitioner and the psychiatric nurse. The central aim is to present certain of the physical therapeutic methods used in psychiatry with regard to indications, technics, advantages, disadvantages and results. Under discussion are the various insulin technics, metrazol and electric convulsion therapy, the drugs used in treatment of epilepsy, the various sedative and stimulant drugs, the role of diet, vitamins and endocrine preparations, the malarial treatment of dementia paralytica, and, finally, prefrontal leukotomy. All this material is handled objectively, and, while the tone in general is perhaps slightly optimistic, no glowing claims are made for any one procedure.

The chief discussion and criticism of the book will probably come in relation to the emphasis on the so-called constitutional approach. This is expounded in the "Introduction," which is preceded by the following quotation from