Mclean Hospital

Depression Related Content


ECT Gave Me My Life Back

Brian Neville is a 54-year-old Massachusetts resident who was treated for depression at McLean Hospital. The memory is as fresh today as the feeling that night six years ago when I got up at around 2:30am and headed into the kitchen for a snack. It was as if a switch went off—but not the lights. It was the depression that had enveloped me for six years suddenly lifting. And every day...

ECT Pioneer and Mental Health Advocate Charles Welch, MD, Retires From McLean

In August, colleagues and friends gathered at McLean Hospital to celebrate the career of Charles Welch, MD. A leader in the field of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and a long-standing advocate for expanding and improving mental health services, Welch retired from his position as a physician at McLean’s Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) Service. Remarking on his time at McLean, Welch said...

Algorithm Identifies Patients Best Suited for Antidepressants

McLean Hospital researchers have completed a study that sought to determine which individuals with depression are best suited for antidepressant medications. Their findings, published in Psychological Medicine on July 2, 2018, have led to the development of a statistical algorithm that identifies patients who may best respond to antidepressants—before they begin treatment. Christian A....

Foundations Support Study on the Benefit of Yoga for Adolescent Depression

Yoga has become ubiquitous. In fact, it is difficult to find a community that doesn’t offer classes ranging from “flow” and “hot” yoga to those with nearly unpronounceable names. Tracing roots back more than 5,000 years, yoga is an array of techniques or practices aimed at integrating mind, body, and spirit to promote mindfulness, personal exploration, and a...

Study on Social Interactions Could Improve Understanding of Mental Health Risks

McLean Hospital investigators have released the results of a study that outlines how age, socioeconomic status, and other factors might contribute to social isolation and poorer mental health. In a paper published in the online version of Clinical Psychological Science, the researchers examine how individuals of all ages and walks of life seek and enjoy social interactions. Because studies have...

Running Against Stigma, Not Away From It

On April 17, 2017, Ana Febres-Cordero, a suicide survivor, and her father Rafael ran the Boston Marathon to support public awareness and outreach programs focused on eliminating the stigma surrounding mental illness. Ana was inspired to partner with McLean Hospital to develop Deconstructing Stigma: Ana’s Marathon Fund because of a shared mission to eliminate the obstacles that discourage...

Brudnick Family Funds Adolescent Depression Research

Irving Brudnick’s struggle with chronic depression began in his late teens and, according to his widow, Betty, the disease troubled him for much of his adult life. A successful businessman, educator, and philanthropist, Brudnick was passionate about putting his time and charitable resources toward causes that meant a great deal to him, including violence prevention, conflict resolution,...

McLean Scientists: Brain Activity Can Predict Success of Depression Treatment

McLean Hospital and Harvard Medical School researchers believe they have uncovered a method that could be useful in predicting a depressed patient’s treatment prognosis, prior to starting treatment. In the paper “Pretreatment Rostral Anterior Cingulate Cortex Activity in Relation to Symptom Improvement in Depression: A Randomized Clinical Trial,” available online and in the...

McLean Clinicians Assist with Theatrical Production About Depression and Suicide

Through the month of March, Boston’s SpeakEasy Stage Company is presenting “Every Brilliant Thing,” a one-character play that looks at the issues surrounding suicide. Each Thursday during the run of the show, the company is hosting post-performance discussion sessions in which audience members can talk about their experiences with depression and suicide. Clinicians from McLean...

ECT Treatment: A History of Helping Patients

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is used to treat patients with certain types of mental illness, including severe depression, severe mania, and catatonia. It was first developed in the late 1930s, with the first recorded treatments at McLean Hospital taking place in 1941. A few years prior to the advent of ECT, many hospitals, including McLean, used chemically induced seizures as a method to...

Mental Health Resources for ECT Patients and Their Families

Individuals who are taking part in electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) to treat severe depression and other mental health diagnoses, or who are considering the treatment, have many questions and concerns. At McLean Hospital, our goal is to provide the resources and support necessary to make a comfortable and informed choice to proceed with ECT. Because of the many fears and misconceptions surrounding...

How We Talk About ECT: Replacing Misconceptions with Stories of Success

Unfortunately, because of the way it has been portrayed in books, films, and other media, many people have a mistaken impression of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). Once known as “electroshock therapy,” ECT has frequently been represented as barbaric and violent, a process that produces memory loss or leads to mind control. Many people remember the dramatic depiction of the therapy in...

ECT Shouldn’t Be a Last-Resort Treatment

Brian Neville had a good life. A one-time body builder, he was 43, a successful businessman in the tanning industry, with a home in Massachusetts and a vacation condo in Florida. Then one morning in 2006 he woke up with the blues. It developed into a persistent darkness that just would not go away. After about six months, he sought treatment. He received prescription medications that he was...

Understanding the Biology Behind Major Depressive Disorder

Major depressive disorder (MDD) affects about seven percent of people in the United States each year. Although researchers and clinicians know that stressful life events can trigger a depressive episode, the biological mechanisms behind it are not well understood. Studies led by Diego A. Pizzagalli, PhD, director of the Center for Depression, Anxiety and Stress Research (CDASR) at McLean Hospital...

Kayla’s Road to Victory: Taking Care of Her Mental Health

The road to success is often neither short nor smooth. Kayla Harrison of Danvers, Massachusetts, is a two-time Olympic gold medalist and the first American to win gold in judo. But she has not always been joyful and confident, as she was when she delivered the commencement address at McLean Hospital’s Arlington School 2017 graduation ceremony. Kayla’s pursuit of judo gold, she told...

Suicide Survivor Running Boston Marathon to Raise Mental Health Awareness

On April 17, 2017, Ana Febres-Cordero, a suicide survivor, and her father Rafael will run the Boston Marathon to support public awareness and outreach programs focused on eliminating the stigma surrounding mental illness. Ana was inspired to partner with McLean Hospital to develop Deconstructing Stigma: Ana’s Marathon Fund because of a shared mission to eliminate the obstacles that...

Depression and Suicide in Adolescents: A McLean Researcher Searches for New Answers

In his lab at McLean Hospital, Randy P. Auerbach, PhD, ABPP, is using wide-ranging technological advances to improve our understanding of why certain depressed youth develop depression and engage in suicidal behaviors. “Identifying markers [objectively observable signs of disease] that improve early diagnosis of depression in youth will have profound consequences across a patient’s...

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