ECT: My doctor has recommended ECT. If... - Anxiety and Depre...

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My doctor has recommended ECT. If you have been through this what was your experience?

7 Replies

I've been through it and trust me it's not pleasant. Only do it as a last resort.

in reply to Square251

I was hoping to hear more details about people’s experience

in reply to Pooc

Well you won't really feel anything during the process itself because you'll be under anasthesia but the issue with with the side effects afterwards. My main issue was amnesia. You'll forget why you're even there afterwards. It comes back to you but I lost my memory of the past like 3-4 months which didn't come back. You'll also be really forgetful for a while afterwards. Another side effect is drowsiness and body ache, you'll feel like you've been through hell so you'll sleep a lot afterwards. I've also had some back issues ever since. Also the thing is, it might not even work after all that. It didn't work for me even after 6 sessions. That's why I think it should be a last resort.

My sister has tried ECT, along with Ketamine therapy, every medication in the book, every thing that you can think of.

Everything except changing her thinking. I have been working diligently to change my thinking for about 1/2 a year and I can tell you that I have made more progress in that 6months then in the previous 60 years.

IDK, if ECT will help you arrive at the point where you are ready to change the way you view the world, but I do know that that is the only way we can get better!

Please try it before you do anything as drastic as ECT.

I went through ect several years ago when I was experiencing suicidal thoughts. The ect did do away with the suicidal thoughts, so it was successful. It did not reduce the depression and anxiety. I did have memory issues which was disconcerting. There are still missing memories now. It is an extreme option. So I agree, last resort.

Someone on here posted her experience of ECT and it left her with memory loss short term memory loss that has been life changing

I would never have it

Is it for depression ? Also have you been on medication that didn't work ?

I have had 22 ECT treatments as well as three ketamine infusions. The ECTs did very little if anything at all for my severe treatment resistant major depression, but they say it helps some people. I have personally only ever even spoken to one other person that had went through it, and it didn't help her either. The worst part for me was the anxiety going through the process beforehand, I wasn't allowed to take my anxiety medication because it will make you not go into a convulsion. And the only pain I felt was my jaw hurt from clinching my teeth together so hard, and I had a headache afterwards. Other things were slight nausea, and pretty bad memory loss, both long term and short term. Most of it finally came back, all in one day too, it was really weird, and I must say that I think for me anyways that the memory loss is what relieved some of the depression for a short while, sometimes you need to forget things, but boy when it came back it was really kind of worse for me. I want to say that I wish I hadn't done it, but if I didn't, I wouldn't know if it worked for me or not. I think I went into with the wrong impression. I was and still am eventhough I know there is no such thing, looking for that silver bullet. I was hoping I just go get put out and electrocuted a few times and when I woke up I would be cured, and that just wasn't the case. I'm not trying to persuade you either way though, I'm just telling you what my experience with it was, it might work for you, it might not. And I was also under the impression that it would only be like 3 or 4, maybe 5 or 6 treatments, Nope! I ened up doing 22 of them, and my doctor wanted to put me on "ECT Maintenance" I was doing 2 to 3 a week, and after 22 of them, he wanted me to come back every so often and get another one, I was like no thank you dude bubye! Knowing what I know now, I would personally (talking about myself here) try the ketamine infusions before ECT treatments. They helped me SOME, for like a week and it was back, but if it gets you over that suicidal hump I suppose it's worth it, worst part about those was I had to be an inpatient, and I've been hospitalized like 10 or 11 times now and that almost never helps. I usually just ened up trying to act like I'm feeling better so they will let me out of there. Oh yeah, and ketamine also comes in a nasal spray and you don't have to be inpatient for that. My insurance just wouldn't pay for ketamine treatments unless I was in the hospital because it hasn't been approved by the FDA to treat depression yet. It wasn't at the time anyways, I don't know about now.

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