Harold Sackeim Mecta deposition video clips

Here are a number of clips from the videotaped deposition of Harold Sackeim (2004). Sackeim was the expert witness for Mecta in a lawsuit in California.

You can read most of the deposition here, in PDF format.

I’m splitting the videos into two pages to reduce your load. If the page loads slowly, or the videos don’t load, try again in thirty minutes…it’s likely YouTube is down.

Richard Abrams is defensive, says Harold Sackeim

Harold Sackeim, king of ECT, discusses his complaints about Richard Abrams, president of Somatics, Inc., saying that Abrams is defensive because of the “fascist” groups, and goes too far with his defensiveness by ignoring the “problems” inherent with ECT. Meow!

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Harold Sackeim tells NY Assemblyman Rivera he “discarded” requests

After making a public offer to evaluate individuals with damage after ECT, Sackeim explains that he told the NY Assemblyman Peter Rivera (D-Bronx) he discarded the responses. They “spent the day” together. How cozy. Rivera is head of the New York Committee on Mental Health. Harold has more than one cozy relationship, and it’s paid off in a big way for him.

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Killroy was here

An endorsement? No, but Harold admits he’s been here. Everyone, please, a warm welcome to the Lord of the Dance, Harold Sackeim.

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He’s said it, very clearly

Very emphatically: “I don’t dispute that there are some people who have very severe memory loss. I’ve been the one who’s been saying that very clearly.”

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2 million people?

“Uh, what I do know is that probably about 2 million people are receive ECT each year…” When questioned by the attorney asking if he “knows” that, Harold backpedals and says he said “estimate.” A few years ago he told Extra it was a million. I guess that Cyberonics VNS device isn’t working out so well.

Perhaps saying “I do know” and then claiming he said “estimate” is being a tad picky. But consider that this seems to be a habit with him: reinventing himself, parading himself as the champion of the shock patient by criticizing “Dick” Abrams, and claiming he’s a purist scientist, even when he admits statistics were not genuine statistics as claimed, but merely a guesstimate. Since the long-held guess of how many Americans receive ECT annually is 100,000 to 200,000 (usually quoted as 100,000 in the media), where on earth did he get this 2 million figure for the world?

Oh, it’s an estimate. He made it up.

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Follow the money…

Here’s something he can’t make up, because there’s a paper trail. He billed Mecta for $10,875 for pretrial consulting. And that was *before* the trial, or even this deposition, took place. No telling what the final bill will be! His rate is $500 an hour to help Mecta defend against a lawsuit. Notice how he refuses to say the amount, instead, referring to the “rate that’s there.” For whatever reason, Harold Sackeim cannot say the words “I charge $500 an hour.”

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Part 2 of the video deposition

Comments (5)

janet bAugust 28th, 2006 at 9:38 am

my 75 year old mother has been suffering from severe depression the past 2years. she has been trying different anti depressants over this period. she is currently on zyprexa and cymbalta. it seems to have helped a little, she has degenerative disc in her neck, so she is also constantly in severe pain. her counselor/physciatrist is recommending vns or ect treatment. she has dropped 40 pounds in the past year.
she is dangerously thin at this point. we can see the mental and physical depreciation progressing rapidly at this point. can oyou give any insight or refer to someone for help?

JuliAugust 28th, 2006 at 11:24 pm

Please see the following Frequently Asked Question:

You might want to consider joining the discussion at http://www.zaprap.org for ECT discussions, and there’s a VNS message board at

DR.SRINI DPMSeptember 3rd, 2009 at 1:38 am

kindly send me the ECT demo video for my practice.

U. A.November 25th, 2010 at 4:24 am

I have undergone several ECT treatments. I was severally depressed, not responding to any treatments and on my way toward suicide. I was not getting better. My doctors along with my family decided to see if ECT would help. IT DID!! Each treatment was closely supervised by trained doctors and medical staff. The doctor in charge of my ECT treatments was very experienced, professional and kind. All my doctors worked together and as I improved the ECT treatments were spread farther apart and eventually ended. – - ECT helped me avoide suicide and in no way was abusive, controlling or hurtful. Yes, I am one who has suffered severe memory loss as a side effect but I would rather be alive w/ a poor memory than dead w/ no memory.

Terry JefferyMarch 31st, 2018 at 11:36 pm

My mother too had shock treatments and never was right then took her own life overdosed on medication given to her by mental hospital only in her 40s we kids lost her in early life . Who is to blame for that it is goverment run Hospital St. Thomas Ontario

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