Subjective Side-Effects of ECT

JOAN GOMEZ

Abstract

The incidence of side-effects present 24 hours after electroconvulsive therapy was studied in 96 patients who between them received 500 treatments in a consecutive series. None of the side-effects occurred frequently: headache was experienced after 2.6 per cent and subjective memory impairment after 3 per cent of treatments. None of the unwanted effects held any serious physical threat. The aspect of ECT most disliked by the patients in this study, and mentioned by 16 per cent of them, was the fear of permanent memory upset.