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April 1959

Transference-Countertransference Phenomena in Choice of Shock: Review of One Hundred Eight Cases, with a Comparative Study

Author Affiliations

Port Chester, N. Y.

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1959;81(4):517-521. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1959.02340160115017

Although electroshock is a useful treatment, we are not uniform in our thinking about it, and are often in doubt as to when and how to employ it. While certain criteria for its use have been established with respect to diagnosis, symptomatology, and chronicity, it remains difficult to predict accurately the response of any individual patient to it. This state of affairs may well be traceable to our failure to consider, in the design of studies bearing on the effectiveness of EST, the host of variables pertaining to the patient, the therapist recommending and administering EST, and the relationship of the doctor and the patient.

Over the past 15 years many workers experienced in the use of the somatic therapies have been impressed with the influence of factors other than the three enumerated above on the effectiveness of EST in any given case. These factors broadly fall into two categories:

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