Shock therapy describes a set of techniques used in psychiatry to treat depressive disorder or other illnesses, by inducing seizures or other extreme brain states, or as a painful method of aversive conditioning. It was started in the 1930s. Shock therapy covers multiple forms.
Two types of shock therapy are currently practiced:
- Electroconvulsive therapy, in which a seizure is induced in the brain, often as an intervention for major depressive disorder, mania, and catatonia.
- The graduated electronic decelerator (GED), an aversive device that applies a powerful electric shock as a punishment for undesirable behavior. The device is manufactured by and used exclusively by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center, a special education institution in Canton, Massachusetts. The GED has been condemned as a torture device by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture.
Other forms, no longer in use, include:
- Insulin shock therapy, introduced by Manfred Sakel in 1933 for the treatment of schizophrenia. This resulted in a coma state for a short amount of time.
- Convulsive therapy, using pentylenetetrazol or other agents to induce seizures. The first use was with cardiazol by von Meduna of Budapest; the belief at the time was there was "some kind of biological antagonism between schizophrenia and epilepsy".
- Deep sleep therapy.
Shock therapy has fallen away in use in lieu of other forms of treatment.
See also edit
- "Shock therapy | psychiatry". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 2021-10-08.
- Gillespie, R.D. (1938). "Schizophrenia". The British encyclopaedia of medical practice, Volume 10. London: Butterworth & co. pp. 311–312.