The spread of lithium therapy

  • F. Neil Johnson


In recent times, the advent of computerised systems for information storage, classification, retrieval and dissemination has made the communication of scientific ideas a very rapid and generalised process. It is no longer possible to trace, with any degree of precision, who told what to whom, when, and with what effect. To the historian interested in disentangling the social from the scientific elements in the spread of ideas, this communications revolution has been a disaster of immense proportions.


Lithium Treatment Ward Round Lithium Therapy Lithium Salt Affective Illness 
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Notes and references

  1. 2.
    Gershon, S. and Yuwiler, A. (1960) ‘A specific psychopharmacological approach to the treatment of mania’, Journal of Neuropsychiatry, 1, 229–41.Google Scholar
  2. 7.
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  15. very large number of psychiatrists interested in using lithium clinically and getting the drug dosages made in local drug stores or by Rowell Labs — they were, I think, the first company willing to make drug and placebo.Google Scholar
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  17. 29.
  18. 30.
  19. 32.
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  41. This was the first article on the psychiatric uses of lithium to be published in Greece. Christodolou, G. N. (1968) ‘Lithium in clinical practice’, [in Greek] Acta Neurologica et Psychiatrica Hellenica, 7, 122–33. This was the first publication in Greece to deal with original observations (on both acute and prophylactic uses of lithium).Google Scholar
  42. 73.
    Professor Lopez-Ibor Aliño opened the first lithium clinic in Spain in 1969. In 1970 he published a long review which brought lithium therapy to the attention of Spanish psychiatrists and which must certainly have been widely read in the Spanish-speaking countries of Latin America: Lopez-Ibor Aliño, J. J. (1970) ‘Empleo del litio en los trastornos mentales: situacion actual y experimental propia’, Actas Luso-Espanolas de Neurologia y Psiquiatria, 24, 197–242.Google Scholar
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    Cade, J. F. J. (1949) ‘Lithium salts in the treatment of psychotic excitement’, Medical Journal of Australia, 36, 349–52.Google Scholar
  44. 78.
    Hanzliček, L. (1957) ‘Lithiove soli v psychiatrii’. In, Problemy Psychiatrie v Praxi a ve Vyzkumu (Prague: Czechoslovak Medical Press) 60–61. Dr Hanzliček is now Director of the Psychiatric Research Institute in Prague.Google Scholar
  45. 81.
    Drs Jaromio Svestka, Karel Nahunek and A. Radova, in particular, are very active in lithium research. Their first publication was in 1970: Svestka, J., Nahunek, K. and Radova, A. (1970) ‘Side effects and complications in lithium therapy’, Activitas Nervosa Superior, 12, 264–65; though their interest in lithium as an antimanic treatment predated this by some years.Google Scholar
  46. 82.
    Yan Shanming (1981) ‘Lithium therapy in China’, Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 64, 270–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. 84.
    Yan Shanming, ‘Lithium therapy in China’ (note 82).CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© F. Neil Johnson 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. Neil Johnson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of LancasterUK

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