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CLINICAL NOTES   |    
DISCUSSION AND STUDY OF VERTEBRAL FRACTURES IN ELECTROCONVULSIVE THERAPY
PETER D. KING
Am J Psychiatry 1962;119:263-265.
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Asst. Prof. of Psychiatry, Neuropsychiatric Institute, UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, Calif.

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Abstract

No vertebral compression fractures occurred among 43 female schizophrenics treated by "glissando" ECT when they were laid on a rigid surface (group X). Four compression fractures occurred among a comparable group of patients treated on a sponge rubber pad 1½ inches thick. This difference is statistically significant. Among older female patients treated by ECT on a rigid surface, 4 compression fractures occurred–all in women over 60. This difference from group X is also statistically significant.It is therefore recommended that older patients who require ECT be treated with the "threshold" method or else by modification with SCC in order to keep vertebral compression fractures at a minimum. Younger patients may be treated by the "glissando" method without modification by SCC with less likelihood of compression fractures provided that they are treated on a rigid surface.

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