Device, 100 Hz, 1mS, 0.5 – 1.2 mA, orbit to mastoid electrodes.
22 neurotic and personality disorder pts (including 2 inpatients) with anxiety, depression, and insomnia (20 females, 2 males 26 – 63 years old, mean = 43.1 years) were divided into active (N = 11), or sham groups (N = 11), each given 5, 30 minute treatments in a double-blind design. A 1 – 7 clinical rating scale was used by a psychiatrist before the first and after the final treatment for 3 areas of symptomatology: anxiety, sleep disturbance, and depression. The Zung depression scale was also employed at the same times. Pts receiving active treatment had a marked clinical improvement over pts receiving placebo treatment. Of the 11 CES pts, 8 showed a marked improvement, 2 showed a partial improvement, and 1 showed no improvement. Of the placebo group, 1 showed marked improvement, 2 showed partial improvement, and 8 showed no improvement. Average “total clinical ratings” on anxiety, sleep disturbance, and depression fell from 11.3 before CES treatment to 3.2 following treatment. The placebo group only fell from 12.2 to 9.5. In anxiety, the CES group fell from 4.3 to 1.4 while the placebo group only fell from 4.4 to 3.2. 8 of the pts who had sham treatments were then given real CES. Pts receiving active treatment following inactive treatment responded better than pts receiving inactive treatment, but did not respond as well as those who received active treatment first. For example, the anxiety score fell from 4.0 to 2.5. At the end of the CES treatment, pts felt no confusion, memory loss, or disorientation. They usually reported a calm, relaxed sensation during the treatment, and a feeling of sedation with a desire to sleep following the treatment. The author stated that he can not help being a little skeptical at his own results. He added that no treatment in common experience is as effective with this type of pt as these results indicate. No side effects were reported.
Rosenthal, Saul H. Electrosleep: A double blind clinical study. Biological Psychiatry. 4(2):179185, 1972.