The effects of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), which is a widely used treatment for psychiatric disorders, have not yet been established. Therefore, we aimed to explore whether the patients' serum ghrelin and leptin levels are associated with the action of ECT treatment. In the case of the mood disorders, which occurred in 16 Patients with major depressivie episode (MDE) and 12 patients With bipolar disorder-manic episode (BD-me) and 25 healthy controls, we have determined the serum levels of ghrelin, leptin and cholesterol before ECT and 2 days after ECT. The BMI was also calculated in all subjects. Although ECT treatment did not change mean the BMI and serum leptin level, the mean serum ghrelin level decreased and the total cholesterol level increased after ECT compared with before ECT. While the leptin levels in the patient group were significantly lower than the controls before and after ECT, the mean serum ghrelin and total cholesterol levels differed statistically only before ECT, but not after ECT than those in controls. The ghrelin levels have decreased significantly after ECT in both sub-groups MDE and BB-me. However, the mean serum total cholesterol level increased statistically after ECT only in the MDE sub-group, and the leptin levels did hot differ in both sub-groups after ECT compared with before ECT. In conclusion, ECT treatment seems to be associated with decreased ghrelin levels and increased cholesterol levels but not leptin levels. However, more comprehensive and detailed studies are needed to decipher the exact role of ECT on ghrelin, leptin and total cholesterol in mood disorders. (C) 2007 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.