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Shocker

June 7, 2007

After reading this article, from Psych Central News, questioning whether or not ECT should be implemented more often as a primary treatment (rather than last-ditch effort), I’m going to do a lot more looking into ECT (electroconvulsive therapy, or shock therapy). I’ve read in a few other places that ECT can work for stubborn depressions, and also for bipolar depressions (which I’m now starting to understand are a reason for why my depressive episodes have lasted so long and been otherwise immune to treatment). If that’s the case, if I could actually have relief from the depression (aka dark pits of fetid hell my mind sometimes falls into), I’d seriously consider it. The article also points out that the memory loss sometimes associated with ECT is only temporary: this has actually been a reason why I’ve avoided the issue of ECT, because I feel like I’ve already lost enough memories. The only problem I can see is that ECT sometimes requires up to a dozen treatments to get a good response, with ‘maintenance’ treatments afterward – it’s not designed to cure, but to bring depression into remission – which means I could be temporarily losing memories pretty often. Of course, if it’s memories of previous sessions that I’d be losing, I’d be in good shape :-)  I’m also curious as to whether or not the manic side of bipolar disorder responds to ECT.

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6 comments

  1. There is a young woman named Barb o ver at “bloggo chicago” who has undergone several rounds of ECT…I think she has been quite pleased with it, but I haven’t kept up with her full story. I’d be very interested to know what you learn about it.


  2. Well, I think I’m going to start by going over and having a gander at Barb’s blog – thanks for the heads-up :-) I’m also going to try to find out within the next week whether or not this treatment is even available where I live – something that could radically affect the scope of my research, lol.


  3. If all I felt for 24 hours a day is depression , I might consider it. This means you don’t enjoy food, walking or anything in your life.
    Liz Spikol (female) had ECT and posted on youtube. She says the relief from depression was temporary, and left her unable to brush her teeth, until she re-learnt.

    her blog
    http://trouble.philadelphiaweekly.com/
    her youtube


  4. Mark, thank you for your comment – sorry it took so long for it to appear (and for me to respond to it), but it was hiding in my spam filter for some reason and I had to fish it out. And I’m glad I did – thank you for the link to Liz Spikol’s blog!


  5. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-peter-breggin/disturbing-news-for-patie_b_44734.html?view=print

    http://www.ect.org/harold-sackeim-reverses-position-in-upcoming-study/

    I hope these links come through I never have figured out
    how to embed links.

    The two articles speak for themselves. Think long and hard before considering ECT.


  6. Gianna, thanks for adding your links and perspectives to this :-) The links came through just fine – I just had to approve this comment before it would show because my spam filter is set to hold comments with multiple links.

    I think it’s sad that this guy got away so long with basically lying to the public. How he got away from it is little mystery to me: ECT is ‘cost-effective’ and there are entities that would have a vested interest in making sure that the most cost-effective treatments remained available. I do think it’s a bit of an irony that someone steps forward and undoes a generation’s worth of his own studies and publications with a single study.



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