Objectives. Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a non-pharmacological method of psychiatric treatment. Advances in pharmacotherapy and development of new drugs have reduced the indications for ECT. Nevertheless, the method shows a very high efficacy in the treatment of affective disorders mainly.
Background. The mechanism underlying action of ECT has not been fully explained yet. A number of hypotheses relate the therapeutic effect of ECT to neurotransmission alterations. In the article an attempt was made to draw attention to and summarize the knowledge about possible influence of ECT on oxidative systems of the human organism.
Conclusions. The findings reported in the literature on the effect of ECT on oxidative stress parameters in humans are rather scarce. No conclusive evidence has been provided by many relevant studies conducted so far. Thus, there is a growing need for further research to investigate the multidirectional mechanism of action of ECT.