Treating mental illness with electricity

Mental illnesses like obsessive compulsive disorder, depression and addiction are notoriously hard to treat and often don't respond to drugs. But a new wave of treatments that stimulate the brain with electricity are showing promise on patients and in clinical trials. We talk to three experts and one patient about the history of treating mental illness, how new technology and deeper understanding of the brain are leading to better treatments and where the neuroscience of mental illness is headed next. 

Featuring Rachel A. Davis, a psychiatrist and researcher at University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in the US and her patient Moksha Patel, a physician and professor at the University of Colorado who has severe obsessive compulsive disorder. We also hear from Joseph J. Fins, a neuroethicist and professor of medicine at Wei Cornell Medical College, part of Cornell University in the US and Jacinta O'Shea, a neuroscientist and associate professor at the University of Oxford.

This episode was produced by Katie Flood, Dan Merino and Mend Mariwany. It was written by Katie Flood and Dan Merino. The executive producer is Gemma Ware. Eloise Stevens does our sound design and our theme music is by Neeta Sarl. Full credits for this episode are available here. A transcript will be available soon. Sign up here for a free daily newsletter from The Conversation.

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