The arsenal of effective, standardized treatment options for major depressive disorder (MDD) is shockingly low considering one in three individuals in the Unit- ed States will experience clinical depression during their lifetime (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). MDD is usually limited to drug therapy and cognitive therapy, and alternative treatment methods are often disregarded as ineffective or unethical. This review explores the possibility of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) as an alternative standard treatment for MDD. ECT has been used for decades for the treatment of mood disorders, but only recently has the medical community begun to understand how ECT affects the brain. With advancements in methodology, ECT has become a safe, efficient, and more permanent treatment option compared to drug therapy. This research discusses proposed causes of depression in the pathways of the brain, as well as specific areas of the brain affected by drug therapy and ECT. With recent research demonstrating the possibility of neurogenesis in the hippocampus being related to depressive symptoms, new perspectives on old treatment options must be explored. This review will propose the possibility of ECT as a standard treatment for MDD.

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