It’s long been a subject of controversy, as well as a few dramatic movie scenes, but electroconvulsive therapy, aka shock therapy, also appears to work when other treatments don’t in some persistent cases of depression. Now the medical community has a little more insight into how it helps patients.

Bloomberg Businessweek:

In the study, nine patients scheduled to undergo shock therapy had their brains scanned using functional MRI before and after treatment. This type of imaging detects blood flow to specific areas of the brain. Then the researchers analyzed the brain’s connectivity using a new mathematical model.

The finding suggests that this overactive connection is important, without saying why. A previous study, published in the journal PLoS had similar results, showing that depressed patients had more hyperactive connections compared with normal control subjects.

Read more

Wait, before you go…

If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface.  We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.

Support Truthdig