How Many ECT Treatments Is Too Many?

Does ECT destroy brain cells?

When ECT is properly administered, brain damage does not occur.

In fact, research has shown that ECT increases brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which stimulates brain cell growth..

Why is ECT bad?

And ECT performed anywhere has some downsides. Patients typically emerge from a session temporarily disoriented. More seriously, most patients experience retrograde amnesia afterward: they no longer remember many events that occurred a few weeks to months before the treatment.

Does ECT work immediately?

In reality, it is a painless medical procedure performed under general anesthesia that is considered one of the most effective treatments for severe depression. It can be lifesaving. ECT works quickly, which is why it’s often the treatment of choice for people with highly severe, psychotic, or suicidal depression.

What is the success rate of ECT therapy?

What is the Success Rate of Electroconvulsive Therapy? ECT is an effective medical treatment option, helping as many as 80-85 percent of patients who receive it. Most patients remain well for many months afterwards.

What mental illness does ECT treat?

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a medical treatment most commonly used in patients with severe major depression or bipolar disorder that has not responded to other treatments. ECT involves a brief electrical stimulation of the brain while the patient is under anesthesia.

What is the most common side effect of ECT?

The most common side effect of ECT is short-term memory loss. However, some people report that they have long-term memory loss, as well. ECT also causes a brief rise in heart rate and blood pressure during the procedure, so it may not be recommended in people with unstable heart problems.

Can ECT cause dementia?

Amid ongoing concerns that electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) may affect cognition, new research suggests the treatment does not increase dementia risk in patients, even older ones, with affective disorders.

Can ECT cause psychosis?

Animal studies demonstrate increased dopamine after ECT, but it has never been observed to cause long-lasting psychotic symptoms. Patients who develop PID usually improve within minutes to days, and there are no reports of ECT delirium lasting as long as in the case of our patient.

How many ECT treatments can a person have?

In the United States, ECT treatments are generally given two to three times weekly for three to four weeks — for a total of six to 12 treatments.

What are the long term side effects of ECT?

But some people experience more long-lasting or permanent memory loss, including losing personal memories or forgetting information they need to continue in their career or make sense of their personal relationships. Some people also find they have difficulty remembering new information from after they’ve had ECT.

Can ECT make you worse?

Any helpful effects are likely to be short-term. ECT can’t prevent future depression, or fix any ongoing stresses or problems that are contributing to how you’re feeling. Some people have very bad experiences of ECT, for example because they feel worse after treatment or are given it without consent.

Can ECT damage your brain?

Does ECT Cause Brain Damage? There is no evidence that, in the era of “modern” ECT, it causes “brain damage,” (i.e. structural changes to the brain).

Does ECT lower IQ?

However, former patients have publicly testified that ECT can result in a very significant (>30 point) permanent decrement in IQ score (Food and Drug Administration, 1982; Andre, 2001; Cott, 2005: p.

When should ECT not be used?

a past history of moderate or severe depression or. initial presentation of subthreshold depressive symptoms that have been present for a long period (typically at least 2 years) or. subthreshold depressive symptoms or mild depression that persist(s) after other interventions.

Is TMS a hoax?

Across many research and clinical studies on TMS, there has been no evidence of TMS being an unsafe form of therapy. TMS Treatment is well tolerated by most patients and has not shown evidence of severe or adverse effects in patients. Myth #6. TMS can only be used as a therapy option for adult patients.

Why is ECT a last resort?

Dr Davey says ECT is seen as a treatment option of last resort, to be used when nothing else has worked, or when there isn’t time to find the right medication for a patient, a process that can take months. “It’s usually people who’ve tried multiple treatments.

How long do the effects of ECT last?

We know that depressed patients often begin to respond after the first treatment and progress to wellness with 6 to 12 treatments. There is considerable variability in the trajectories, but most commonly there is progressive symptomatic improvement within the first week and complete remission within 3 to 4 weeks.

Does ECT make you forget?

Memory Loss Memory loss is the primary side effect associated with ECT treatment. Most people experience what’s called retrograde amnesia, which is a loss of memory of events leading up to and including the treatment itself. Some people’s memory loss is longer and greater with ECT.

Who is a good candidate for ECT?

People who have had ECT before and responded well are good candidates for ECT. Other first-line indications for the procedure include people who are catatonic or suffering from a form of depression known as psychotic depression (depression associated with delusions and hallucinations).

What happens if ECT doesn’t work?

If electroconvulsive therapy doesn’t work, the next step could be deep brain stimulation (DBS) — a depression treatment that is currently considered experimental.

Does your memory come back after ECT?

Shortly after ECT, most patients have gaps in their memory for events that occurred close in time to the course of ECT, but the amnesia may extend back several months or years. Retrograde amnesia usually improves during the first few months after ECT.