Electroconvulsive therapy is a form of treatment for some severe forms of mental illness. It involves the administration of an electrical current to one or both sides of a patient’s brain under general anaesthetic in order to produce a seizure. It may be recommended when other forms of treatment including medication and psychotherapy are ineffective. Often this produces an improvement in depressive and psychotic symptoms. Sometimes, ECT is prescribed for people who for other medical reasons cannot tolerate medications.