ECT- Need Some Advice

Discussion in 'Mental Health Disorders' started by TrentGrad, Apr 25, 2013.

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  1. TrentGrad

    TrentGrad Well-Known Member

    So my Doctor wants me to give ECT a try. I have issues with depression, but I'm apparently bipolar. I also have issues with Aspergers, with Anxiety and with Obsessive Compulsive disorder as well. What I've read suggests that ECT can work for depression, but may not work for the anxiety or obsessive thoughts. And my understanding from my conversations with my that the key to the depression for the obsessive thoughts: they feed the anxiety, and the anxiety feeds the depression.

    Here's the thing though: my world is already so small, I'm afraid of the hazards of long term memory loss. And I repress myself A LOT: things that bother me, I hold it in...I have done this for a long time. I'm afraid I'll emerge from ECT...unable to repress the things that currently make me very frustrated at times.

    I need advice from anyone whose had ECT: would you recommend it for others? Would you recommend it for someone like me?
  2. snarrylover

    snarrylover Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry I'm unable to offer any advice on the matter, being unfamiliar with ECT, but from what I understand it is last resort only.

    I'm sure you're doctor has provided you with plenty of information on the subject and has offered you reading materials. Just in case you need some more...
    deleted link to pts comments as not helpful really as everyone reacts to treatment differently
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2013
  3. total eclipse

    total eclipse SF Friend Staff Alumni

    The thing here hun is to remember each person is affected by ect in their own way I as a professional have seen it work wonders hun it has given someone back their life. The memory loss is minimal but you need to outway to pros and the cons If you are so depressed now and not able to move forward this treatment may help you to do so. Talk to the team hun that will be adminstrating the ect go and see for yourself how the procedure is done and ask question ok Hope you decide what is best for YOU
  4. skinnylove911

    skinnylove911 Well-Known Member

    I would definitely speak to your professionals about it and get them to explain the procedure and what happens and also get them to show you the ward/department x
  5. TrentGrad

    TrentGrad Well-Known Member

    I appreciate what you all have said...and I really appreciate you taking the time to give me an answer. Please don't take what I'm about to say to heart or personally...I'm not meaning to sound as ungrateful as I probably do here...but I honestly feel like banging my head against the wall.

    I'm trying desperately to make an informed decision, and it's impossible to think this least for me.

    I'm aware of how the procedure happens, and the potential risks. And in fact there was a newspaper in my city that recently ran a report about a woman who went through catastrophic memory loss...and a friend of my sister's who went through it...and lost everything.

    The accounts I've read online are so conflicting, I feel like it's doing my head in. On the one hand, I read someone say that after they had it done, it was like finally getting a joke that everyone else got long ago. And Kitty Dukakis I think her name is had it done...and seemed to say it was a lifesaver for her. She said she has memory moments, and she's lost some of what she used to have...but for her, it was a small price to pay.

    Then I read others who say it's "a rape of the soul," and Ernest Hemingway allegedly described it as a 'brilliant cure but we lost the patient.'

    Part of the reason I think that I've thus far resisted the urge to follow through on suicidal because I've feared the possibility of failure, and being infirmed. The thing is...the ECT process leaves me with that same fear: the idea that the treatment may not be successful is one thing...the fear that it could leave me in a more debilitated state than I already am...scares the hell out of me!

    There's a lot of information, but nothing makes anything clear. It's all so ambiguous that it does my head in...nothing is cut and's just a disaster!
  6. catecholamine

    catecholamine Well-Known Member

    I have had ECT. It didn't help me personally, but I did meet people that it helped. It should be a last resort because there are memory side effects. I lost a lot of memories of things from the past few years before the ECT and also feel that it affects my memory currently. I have a harder time thinking.
    If it helps, it could be worth it. But you should try lots of other options first. Also, everyone is different, it may not affect you as much as it did me as far as the memory loss goes. Feel free to PM me if you want to talk about it or get more info about what it's like.
  7. EX1T

    EX1T Member

    I'm sorry I'm going to hijack this thread... Ive read a lot about ect but it has never been offered to me.. I don't agree with the drs diagnosis of depression caused by PTSD .. If I were depressed surely the antidepressants would have worked by now..

    However, the memory loss intrigues me.. There are 12 yrs of my life that I need "to lose" no amount of talking over and over and making me think about it is making me better.. I need to forget I think in order to function normally ever again. Would ect maybe take those memories from me? I know I'd probably also lose some I would want to kep, but surely I could make a dary of some sort with photos to preserve those good ones? How long back does the memory loss go?

    OP I understand your frustration.. In the mental health field it's ALL guessing if you ask me.. They can't even explain how drugs work, or what depression actually is, so getting concrete answers is like emptying an ocean with a sieve.
  8. catecholamine

    catecholamine Well-Known Member

    There's no way to know what memories you will lose
    I lost most memories from 1 to 3 years prior. I didn't lose whole years, just memories here and there. I lost a lot of fun times...a lot of trips to DragonCon, I no longer remember AT ALL, which is a real shame because it was great times with so many of my friends. I lost memories of trips, vacations, etc. I hate it that I lost them. Most of my negative memories are still intact.
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