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Comparison of Therapeutic Effects and Memory Changes with Bilateral and Unilateral ECT
Am J Psychiatry 1968;125:294-304.
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Attending staff psychiatrist, St. Luke's Hospital Center, New York, N. Y.

Chief psychologist, department of psychiatry and neurology, Woman's Medical College of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pa.

Department of psychiatry, University Hospitals of Cleveland. Cleveland, Ohio

Associate professor of pharmacology and psychiatry, School of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland

1968-69, American Psychiatric Association

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The relative merits of bilateral and unilateral electroconvulsive therapy in the treatment of depressed patients were investigated in a double-blind clinical comparison. Although most patients who received the unilateral mode of treatment experienced significantly less immediate memory loss, they required an average of one more treatment and two additional days of hospitalization, as compared with the bilaterally treated group. In addition, a wide range of responses was evident among individuals within each treatment group. The authors conclude that neither treatment mode is uniformly superior; the choice should be made in each case on the basis of patient needs and available treatment facilities.

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