ECT ‘has been beneficial to patient’

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) given to a 62-year-old man detained in hospital where he had refused to eat has proven beneficial to him, the High Court has heard.

The man had been refusing food, medication, and was uncommunicative.

Last April, the HSE got High Court permission to force-feed him and administer ECT, which is a treatment for mental illness, under general anaesthesia, in which small electric currents are passed through the brain.

When the case returned before High Court president Mr Justice Peter Kelly, he was told the 12 ECT sessions were complete and had been beneficial to the man.

The judge adjourned the case to next month for an updated report.

Doctors said it would be to his benefit to stay in hospital for another four to 12 weeks and the judge said he was prepared to adjourn the case for another progress report.


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