ECT survivor and author Linda Andre talks about her book, Doctors of Deception with Madness Radio, (2011.)
Linda Andre became an accidental activist after her life was irreparably altered by ECT. She lost five years of her life and suffered permanent cognitive disability after a series of treatments.
Andre’s journey would lead her to the electroshock survivor community and activism, later to write what many consider the definitive book on electroshock, Doctors of Deception: What They Don’t Want You to Know about Shock Treatment.
In this interview, Linda discusses her experience, the complex history of shock therapy, and elaborate efforts by the industry to mislead and suppress information about ECT risks, side effects, and efficacy.
Additional Topics Covered:
- Modified ECT isn’t new – electroconvulsive therapy performed under anesthesia with muscle paralytics have been in use since the 1950s.
- Modified ECT is physically more damaging to the brain because the seizure threshold is raised by anesthesia, requiring more electricity to induce convulsions
- Pure oxygenation is used to make seizures last longer, not improve patient safety.
- Patients injured by ECT struggle to be taken seriously by doctors, the media, and the society.
- Celebrity ECT promoters like Kitty Dukakis and Carrie Fisher have acknowledged they have experienced permanent memory loss.
- Psychiatry lobbied against FDA safety testing at a time the device was supposed to be proven effective or taken off the market.
- Conflicts of interest are rife in ECT research.
If I could summarize my book in one sentence it would be this: if you tell a big lie and you tell it often enough and it’s big enough people will believe you.Linda Andre