The discovery of metrazol (pentamethylethylenetetrazol) convulsive therapy marked an important advance in psychiatry. As with many new forms of treatment, early reports indicated that the method was relatively free of major complications. However, with more experience in the application of convulsive therapy it became evident that serious complications could and did occur. Some reports described complications of so serious a nature and frequency that abandonment of the procedure was recommended by many.
Among those familiar with the results of metrazol therapy there are few who question its value. It is obvious, then, that unless some method for the prevention of complications incidental to its use is developed, one is likely to be deprived of a potent therapeutic weapon. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the anatomic and mechanistic factors which operate to produce fractures and dislocations during metrazolinduced convulsions and to present a technic based on these considerations