Electric Convulsive Therapy

I am now a sadder but a wiser woman, and one who can say with certainty that knowledge and freedom are happiness” Hannah Greally

I won’t be writing very much about Electric Shock / Electric Convulsive Therapy (ECT), but have included information from 3 Psychiatrists and a Psychiatric survivor. Dr Michael Corry, Prof Ivor Browne, Dr Bob Johnson and survivor Mary Maddock.

I sat beside a lady in a private hospital that was going through this treatment. She wasn’t allowed in the garden. My heart went out to her and I started to realise what type of place I was in. I found out later it had one of the highest rates of ECT in the country !

I also watched a documentary on mental health where a woman seemed to benefit from Electric shock but by the end of the programme she had “relapsed”. So what appeared initially to be a “miracle cure” seemed very much short lived.

I would suggest writing an Advance Directive and specifying whether or not ECT would be a treatment option that you find acceptable. 

Information that may be of use

1) Barbaric age of electric shock ‘cure’ must vanish by Dr Michael Corry ~


2) “Over many years studies of ECT have shown no long-term benefit, only a temporary relief of symptoms due to confusion and brain damage”. Ivor finishes with this line “The only real, lasting change comes when we help a person to bring about the painful work of change within themselves”

Prof Ivor Browne (June 2008) ~


3) An informed consent form for Electric shock treatment by Psychiatrist Dr Bob Johnson ~


 4) Mary Maddock: a survivor of ECT and decades of Psychiatric drugging ~


5) A 16-year-old girl with severe depression associated with an eating disorder is to receive up to 12 sessions of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)


{ I would love to know where this young girl is now and how she is doing. I know of another young girl who had a cocktail of drugs forced upon her via the High Court. I went to see her recently. She is damaged and suffering on a daily basis. Now age 20 ! Her family has also suffered. I won’t go into much detail at the moment. There has to be a more humane way of helping our young people. }

6) Soul Survivor by Mary Maddock, 2006 ~


When it comes to modern day Psychiatry in Ireland this is what Sligo woman, Psychiatric survivor, long term activist and author of Soul Survivor Mary Maddock had to say:

“very little if anything, has changed over the last thirty years. The ‘experts’ still call the shots. The medical model is dominant, the ‘chemical imbalance’ theory is still propounded, depression is still a ‘disease’ and drugs are still the main form of treatment. More and more ‘disorders’ are being invented to be treated with more and more drugs, to the delight of the pharmaceutical companies whose profits grow and grow. Every year, a new crop of patients join the conveyor belt, just as we did in 1976. Pre-teen children are prescribed Ritalin. ‘A pill for every ill’ is becoming the norm. And yet, despite all that, two stark facts remain – 70% of admissions to psychiatric hospitals are re-admissions and the suicide rate in Ireland has never been higher”.

7) Bird’s Nest Soup by Hannah Greally, 1971 ~



In memory of my sane father who was a gentle man and should be turning 77 tomorrow. He was subjected to this barbaric treatment back in 1970s Ireland and possibly the early 1980s. It affected his memory. Rest in Peace.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s