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August 1991

Antidepressant Effects of High-Dose Right Unilateral Electroconvulsive Therapy

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences (Drs Abrams, Swartz, and Vedak), Psychology (Dr Abrams), and Pharmacology (Dr Swartz), University of Health Sciences/Chicago Medical School, North Chicago (III), and North Chicago Veterans Affairs Medical Center (Drs Abrams, Swartz, and Vedak).

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1991;48(8):746-748. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1991.01810320070010

• In a random-assignment, double-blind, controlled comparison in 38 melancholic men, overall antidepressant potency of high-dose electroconvulsive therapy (378-mC charge) given with right unilateral electrode placement was not significantly different from that with bilateral placement, although there was a trend for faster improvement with bilateral ECT. The suprathreshold character of the stimulus, about 2.5 times the expected seizure threshold, may have contributed to the high efficacy of brief-pulse right unilateral electroconvulsive therapy found in this study.