Electroconvulsive Therapy Program

ECT brochure

Download our brochure to find out more about the ECT Program at UCSF.

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is available for people suffering from particular behavioral and emotional disturbances, including some forms of depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia. It is most often used in the treatment of severe depression that has not responded to medications and psychotherapy. This treatment is offered through a partnership between Langley Porter Psychiatric Hospital & Clinics and the Ambulatory Services Center of UCSF Medical Center.


Evaluation for ECT includes psychiatric and physical assessment and an informational exchange with interested patients and their families, where appropriate. Treatment generally is administered up to three times per week for several weeks. ECT is generally started during an inpatient stay, but may also be available on an outpatient basis, depending on individual circumstances. Maintenance treatment is also available as appropriate.


Patients referred for ECT must have a primary treating psychiatrist. The referring psychiatrist may call (415) 476-7430.

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