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May 1955

Comparative Study of Thiamylal and Thiopental (Pentothal) in Electroconvulsive Therapy

Author Affiliations

Los Angeles

From the Los Angeles Neurological Institute.

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1955;73(5):533-535. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1955.02330110049006

Thiamylal (Surital) sodium has been reported* to be a thiobarbiturate of exceptional value as premedication in electroconvulsive therapy, particularly by abolishing or minimizing the convulsion. Thus, electroconvulsive therapy could be given safely to those with bony or other conditions wherein it would be unwise for the patient to have a generalized, intense convulsive seizure.

The purpose of the present clinical study was to compare thiamylal with thiopental (Pentothal) as a premedication for patients receiving electroconvulsive therapy to determine any significant differences.

METHOD  A group of 25 patients who required electroconvulsive therapy were selected at random. There were 15 women and 10 men, with an age distribution from 21 to 80 and an average age of 45. The method of "blind study" was used; i. e., four differently labeled vials individually containing thiobarbiturates A, B, X, and Y were supplied by Abbott Laboratories. The only discernible difference in the vials was

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