Jefferson Journal of Psychiatry


The initial clinical trial of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) was performed by Ugo Cerletti and Lucino Bini at the University of Rome in 1938. The following paper will examine both the developments which led to the first trial of ECT, and the use of ECT over th e subsequent fifty years. Hopefully, by investigating the historical aspects of the development and progression of ECT, a better understanding of this treatment modality can be attained.

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