Residential treatment for emotionally disturbed children

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Insulin coma therapy for schizophrenia

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In the 1930s, American psychiatric hospitals were overcrowded and depended on custodial care. Insulin coma therapy, introduced by Austrian Manfred Sakel, was one of several "somatic therapies" introduced in the 1930s and 1940s. Using insulin, psychiatrists put patients with schizophrenia in comas for several hours every day. Many felt the therapy was extraordinarily effective. I argue that much of their experience of efficacy was linked to the spaces in which ICT was administered, which made psychiatrists feel like "real" physicians. A link to my article, "Performing a Cure for Schizophrenia," is provided below.

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