Mclean Hospital

ECT Related Content


McLean Researchers Lead ECT Study for Alzheimer’s Patients With Aggression

Researchers at McLean Hospital will lead a five-year study to investigate the use of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) to treat severe agitation and aggression in people with Alzheimer’s disease. The study was made possible by a five-year grant, expected to total $11.8 million, from the National Institute on Aging (NIA) under award number R01AG06110001. Part of the National Institutes of...

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...

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: 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...

Fighting Depression: TMS and ECT are Sought-After Treatments

Elizabeth See struggled with depression for more than a decade when, in November 2014, she was diagnosed with Goodpasture syndrome, a rare autoimmune disease that attacks the kidneys and lungs. A tennis professional, she suddenly found her livelihood and passion restricted by physical constraints and regular dialysis treatments. TMS and ECT are increasingly sought-after treatments for depression...

A Case of Pulmonary Embolism

My name is Katherine Athens and I am a nurse in the electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) clinic. It was a busy Friday in the clinic in March, a year ago. We were preparing to treat over 50 patients that day. Our practice had been expanding over the years, and it was hardly unusual to treat 50-plus patients a day—but it was busy nonetheless. (Since then, we have moved to a newly renovated and...

Teresa Henderson Receives Altschule Award

As a standout among a group of very accomplished and seasoned nurses in McLean’s Psychiatric Neurotherapeutics Program, Teresa Henderson, RN, is well respected by all members of the team. Whether she is talking with patients about hard issues, or persistently following up on the phone with patients or family members after a missed appointment, everything Henderson does has the patients...

Successfully Treating Depression and Other Mental Illnesses Through Non-Pharmacologic Technologies at McLean Hospital

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)—a highly effective intervention for chronic depression, mania, and schizophrenia—and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS)—used for severe depression—are increasingly becoming viable options for successfully treating patients, especially those who may not respond well to medication. “Patients are increasingly looking for alternative...

Building Trust Slowly With a Longtime Patient

My name is Sandra Feehan. I have worked at McLean for 15 years and feel very fortunate to have a job I look forward to every day. I work primarily in the Neurotherapeutics department with patients undergoing electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) for disorders such as chronic depression, mania, catatonia, and schizophrenia. I also work on a per diem basis in the Clinical Evaluation Center. I am...

Paula Bolton, MS, APRN-BC

Paula Bolton, MS, APRN-BC, has been a nurse practitioner in the Internal Medicine Department at McLean Hospital for over 25 years. Her clinical practice has focused on health promotion and disease prevention for psychiatric patients. She has worked with inpatients, residential patients and outpatients with a special interest in providing medical care for patients at risk for metabolic syndrome....

Stephen J. Seiner, MD

Dr. Seiner’s clinical interests include neurotherapeutics and geriatric psychiatry. He is the director of McLean’s Psychiatric Neurotherapeutics Program, which includes electroconvulsive therapy and transcranial magnetic stimulation (both superficial and deep). McLean’s ECT service now performs over 7,000 treatments a year, making it one of the largest ECT centers in the country...

Manjola Ujkaj, MD, PhD

Manjola Ujkaj, MD, PhD, focuses her clinical interests on psychopharmacological and neurotherapeutic approaches to treatment-resistant mood disorders. Dr. Ujkaj’s early research activity focused on the epidemiology of depression and cognitive disorders in the geriatric population. Later on she investigated safety and efficacy of electroconvulsive therapy for the treatment of the...

Charles Welch, MD

Charles Welch, MD, ran the ECT service at Massachusetts General Hospital from 1976-2013. Since 2013, he has served as an attending on the ECT Service at McLean Hospital, and is now a consultant in psychiatry. In addition to ECT, his career interests include prevention of child maltreatment, serving on the Massachusetts Governor’s Commission on Child Abuse in 1998. Dr. Welch is also...

Stephanie White-Bateman, MD

In her clinical work, Stephanie White-Bateman, MD, focuses on the treatment of mood and anxiety disorders using medication management as well as psychotherapeutic and neurotherapeutic approaches. She began her career at McLean as an attending psychiatrist on the inpatient Short Term Unit for mood and anxiety disorders before transitioning to her current position with the Electroconvulsive Therapy...