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September 1958

A Combined Biochemical and Clinical Study of Mental Disease: I. Cholesterol Levels in Patients Receiving Deep Insulin Coma Therapy

Author Affiliations

Middletown, Conn.

From the Department of Biochemical Research and the Insulin Unit, Connecticut State Hospital.

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1958;80(3):335-344. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1958.02340090071012

Introduction  Recent investigations in this laboratory of the ratio of cerebrospinal fluid calcium and magnesium in psychotic and nonpsychotic patients gave results which could be explained by the alteration of the permeability of the blood-brain barrier.1,2 It was suggested that endocrine and other organ systems external to the central nervous system may have an effect on this permeability. Therefore it was decided to evaluate as many of these systems as possible in mental disease.Because of the widespread use of ataractic drugs in mental hospitals, it is difficult to obtain a patient group whose metabolic processes may not have been altered. However, patients undergoing insulin shock therapy are drug-free and receiving no therapy except insulin. In addition, they have the same diet and approximately the same amount of exercise and recreation as well as excellent surroundings and attention. Furthermore, it has been shown at this hospital that insulin therapy