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December 1944


Arch NeurPsych. 1944;52(6):498-504. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1944.02290360070005

The simplicity of electric convulsive therapy and its possible application to ambulatory patients seem to favor its indiscriminate use in treatment of all types of psychoneuroses. This possibility suggested a broader clinical investigation for the purpose of determining the actual value of this method for the neuroses. Another reason for such a therapeutic study was the expectation that a comparison of reactions in the neuroses and those in the major psychoses might contribute to a better understanding of

the effect of shock treatment in general. The difference between the effect of electric convulsive therapy and that of other organic methods applied in treatment of the neuroses promised to offer further points of interest.

Cerletti,1 the originator of electric convulsion therapy was the first to try the method in a few cases of severe psychoneuroses, without more than transient results, which he attributed to autosuggestion. Many experienced investigators reported discouraging