Wrist fracture in a patient undergoing electroconvulsive treatment monitored using the "cuff" method

  • Christopher BaethgeEmail author
  • Tom Bschor


We report on a case of a 64-year-old female patient who received electroconvulsive treatment for major depression. The patient sustained a fracture to the distal radius of the arm blocked by the "cuff" method (Smith fracture). Subsequent investigations revealed that she was suffering from osteoporosis. This case report underlines the importance of special treatment procedures for osteoporotic patients and other patient groups at risk for fractures. We recommend screening for osteoporosis in routine pre-ECT evaluation, even in younger patients, and propose not attaching the cuff to the arm in those at risk for fractures. In our patient, electroconvulsive therapy was safely continued using higher doses of succinylcholine and without the cuff method.

Key words

electroconvulsive therapy cuff method fracture osteoporosis depression 


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Copyright information

© Steinkopff Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Bipolar & Psychotic Disorders Program MailmanResearch Center McLean, Division of Massachusetts, General HospitalBelmontUSA
  2. 2.Klinik für Psychiatrie und PsychotherapieUniversitätsklinikum Benjamin Franklin Freie Universität BerlinGermany
  3. 3.Klinik und Poliklinik für Psychiatrie und PsychotherapieUniversitätsklinikum Carl Gustav Carus Technische Universität DresdenGermany

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