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February 18, 1956


JAMA. 1956;160(7):586-587. doi:10.1001/jama.1956.02960420066022

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To the Editor:—  In the literature available to me, I could find only three reported cases of peroneal nerve palsy as a complication in the course of electroshock therapy (Mason, E.: Peroneal Nerve Palsy Seen in Patients Treated with Electroconvulsive Therapy, Am. J. Psychiat.112:299 [Oct.] 1955). Kalinowsky and Hoch (Shock Treatments, Psychosurgery and Other Somatic Treatments in Psychiatry, ed. 2, New York, Grune & Stratton, Inc., 1952, p. 164) claim that "neurological complications following electroconvulsive treatment are practically unknown" and that "aggravation of previous neurological conditions" have not been observed. I have seen two cases, one in a 49-year-old married white man who was hospitalized for a severe depression. After his sixth electroshock treatment, the patient noted some weakness in his right foot and complained that he had to raise his leg higher on walking. He showed a high stepping and slapping gait and had a foot drop

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