Original SDMB thread Psychiatrists: Glorified Drug Dealers?
The psychiatric profession is very, very heavily lobbied and wined and dined and favor-curried by the pharmaceutical reps.
I am hardly an apologist for psychiatrists, but in fairness to them they don't have much in their toolkit except medication. Their conferences are virtually sponsored by and catered by the pharma companies who distribute literature and samples and push the idea that their newest and greatest will do a better job than the dusty old pills of yesteryear.
From what I can remember electroconvulsive therapy uses a jolt of electricity that is barely strong enough to run a microwave. This jolt lasts less than a second. Yes, there is Cuckoo's Nest style shaking (that's where the convulsive part somes in), but it does more harm that good by raising biogenic anime levels. Simply put, it gets you high and keeps you that way for about a month.
The jolt creates a seizure and does permanent brain damage, which is not an unfortunate side effect but is the means by which it "works".
You don't get wheeled in for "a" shock, incidentally. Shock treatment is done as a series. They electrocute your brain over and over, day after day, leaving you in an increasingly hazy fog of disorientation and scrambled memories. Then they release you (with permanent memory loss, impaired cognitive function, flattened affect, and nightmares about the experience) and then, as you say, you buzz along with the false euphoria generated by neural damage for a month or so before it wears off.
Oh, and they still do them on an involuntary basis.
Hardly an improvement over pharmaceuticals, even hideous ones like Prolixin and Haldol.
Then there's psychosurgery. Stick a wire down into the brain tissue and cauterize a bit of it. SO much more civilized than the old ice-pick lobotomies of the 1950s, don't you think? ::shudder::
See my next post on this same thread
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