Medicine: Help for the Manic-Depressive

To the chemist and now to the psychiatrist, lithium is a fascinating substance, the lightest of all the solid elements. Its compounds have had a discouraging history in medicine. Last week, however, lithium carbonate was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of mental patients in the overexcited mania phase of manic-depressive psychosis.

No less remarkable than the properties of the metal itself is the way its compound has won approval, primarily due to the work of Australian Psychiatrist John Frederick Joseph Cade. After 3½ years as a prisoner of war, Cade began to work in a mental...

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