FORT MYERS, Fla. — The patients are rolled on gurneys into a small screened-off area at Park Royal Hospital every 15 minutes with assembly line regularity.
One is a woman in her 60s, who, like the others, gets a momentary jolt of electricity sent through her head, causing a brain seizure and her body to tense for several seconds. The hope: That this treatment — the electroconvulsive, or “electro-shock,” therapy — will ease the symptoms of her bipolar disorder that has so far not responded well to drugs.
The procedure, one of thousands performed at Park Royal since the 76-bed hospital opened last year, has worked on the woman in the past, says Dr. Ivan Mazzorana, who performs all of them on patients here. And, he said, it’s likely to do so again.