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Trial details imported from

For full trial details, please see the original record at

Registration number
Ethics application status
Date submitted
Date registered
Date last updated

Titles & IDs
Public title
Ketamine as an Anaesthetic Agent in Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)
Scientific title
A Double-blind Randomised, Placebo-controlled Study of Adjunctive Ketamine Anaesthesia in ECT (Electroconvulsive Therapy)
Secondary ID [1] 0 0
HREC 07281
Universal Trial Number (UTN)
Trial acronym
Linked study record

Health condition
Health condition(s) or problem(s) studied:
Major Depressive Episode 0 0
Condition category
Condition code

Study type
Description of intervention(s) / exposure
Treatment: Drugs - Ketamine
Treatment: Drugs - Saline

Experimental: Active - Ketamine

Placebo Comparator: Placebo - Saline (placebo)

Treatment: Drugs: Ketamine
Ketamine IV will be administered after the administration of the normal anaesthetic agents for ECT.

Treatment: Drugs: Saline
Saline (placebo) will be administered after the normal anaesthetic agents in ECT.

Intervention code [1] 0 0
Treatment: Drugs
Comparator / control treatment
Control group

Primary outcome [1] 0 0
Memory tests
Timepoint [1] 0 0
Before ECT, after 6 ECT treatments, at the end of the ECT course
Secondary outcome [1] 0 0
Depression rating scale
Timepoint [1] 0 0
Before ECT, after each week of treatment, at the end of the ECT course

Key inclusion criteria
- Satisfy DSM-IV-TR criteria for Major Depressive Episode

- 18 years or over

- Does not have a diagnosis of schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, rapid cycling
bipolar disorder, or current psychotic symptoms

- No known sensitivity to ketamine

- No ECT in the last 3 months

- No drug or alcohol abuse in the last 12 months

- Able to give informed consent

- Score at least 24 on Mini Mental State Examination
Minimum age
18 Years
Maximum age
No limit
Both males and females
Can healthy volunteers participate?
Key exclusion criteria

Study design
Purpose of the study
Allocation to intervention
Randomised controlled trial
Procedure for enrolling a subject and allocating the treatment (allocation concealment procedures)
Methods used to generate the sequence in which subjects will be randomised (sequence generation)
Masking / blinding
Blinded (masking used)
Who is / are masked / blinded?
The people receiving the treatment/s
The people administering the treatment/s
The people assessing the outcomes
Intervention assignment
Other design features
Phase 4
Type of endpoint(s)
Statistical methods / analysis

Recruitment status
Data analysis
Reason for early stopping/withdrawal
Other reasons
Date of first participant enrolment
Date of last participant enrolment
Date of last data collection
Sample size
Accrual to date
Recruitment in Australia
Recruitment state(s)
Recruitment hospital [1] 0 0
Wesley Hospital - Sydney
Recruitment postcode(s) [1] 0 0
2217 - Sydney

Funding & Sponsors
Primary sponsor type
Northside Clinic, Australia
Other collaborator category [1] 0 0
Name [1] 0 0
Wesley Mission
Address [1] 0 0
Country [1] 0 0

Ethics approval
Ethics application status

Brief summary
Research into the mechanisms underlying memory impairment in ECT suggests that its
development may be prevented by the administration of certain medications at the time of ECT
treatment. For example there are reasons to believe that ketamine, also used as an
anaesthetic agent, may have such protective properties.

In this clinical study patients undergoing a course of ECT will be offered the opportunity to
receive a small dose of ketamine (or a placebo) as part of their anaesthetic at the time of
ECT treatment. Mood changes and any memory changes will be evaluated to see if the subjects
who received ketamine had less memory side effects than those who did not, while still
improving their depression.
Trial website
Trial related presentations / publications
McDaniel WW, Sahota AK, Vyas BV, Laguerta N, Hategan L, Oswald J. Ketamine appears associated with better word recall than etomidate after a course of 6 electroconvulsive therapies. J ECT. 2006 Jun;22(2):103-6.
Ostroff R, Gonzales M, Sanacora G. Antidepressant effect of ketamine during ECT. Am J Psychiatry. 2005 Jul;162(7):1385-6.
Rasmussen KG, Jarvis MR, Zorumski CF. Ketamine anesthesia in electroconvulsive therapy. Convuls Ther. 1996 Dec;12(4):217-23.
White PF, Way WL, Trevor AJ. Ketamine--its pharmacology and therapeutic uses. Anesthesiology. 1982 Feb;56(2):119-36.
Krystal AD, Weiner RD, Dean MD, Lindahl VH, Tramontozzi LA 3rd, Falcone G, Coffey CE. Comparison of seizure duration, ictal EEG, and cognitive effects of ketamine and methohexital anesthesia with ECT. J Neuropsychiatry Clin Neurosci. 2003 Winter;15(1):27-34.
Pigot M, Andrade C, Loo C. Pharmacological attenuation of electroconvulsive therapy--induced cognitive deficits: theoretical background and clinical findings. J ECT. 2008 Mar;24(1):57-67. doi: 10.1097/YCT.0b013e3181616c14. Review.
MacPherson RD, Loo CK. Cognitive impairment following electroconvulsive therapy--does the choice of anesthetic agent make a difference? J ECT. 2008 Mar;24(1):52-6. doi: 10.1097/YCT.0b013e31815ef25b. Review.
Public notes

Principal investigator
Name 0 0
Colleen K Loo, MB BS FRANZCP, MD
Address 0 0
University of New South Wales
Country 0 0
Phone 0 0
Fax 0 0
Email 0 0
Contact person for public queries
Name 0 0
Address 0 0
Country 0 0
Phone 0 0
Fax 0 0
Email 0 0
Contact person for scientific queries

Summary results
Other publications