Question: What Is Ect Treatment

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..

How does ECT work?

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a procedure, done under general anesthesia, in which small electric currents are passed through the brain, intentionally triggering a brief seizure. ECT seems to cause changes in brain chemistry that can quickly reverse symptoms of certain mental health conditions.

Does ECT work for anxiety?

Electroconvulsive therapy is effective in the acute treatment of major depressive disorder patients associated with anxiety symptoms. Anxiety symptoms improved less than depression symptoms during acute electroconvulsive therapy.

Does your memory come back after ECT?

Sometimes, however, these details come back with prompting or with time. Rarely, some patients describe much more significant retrograde memory loss, but with advances in ECT, this is much less common and usually only occurs in cases of severe illness and long or repeated courses of ECT.

Does ECT kill 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.

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?

The seizure itself tends to last 20 to 60 seconds, but can last as long as 3 minutes. Patients wake up several minutes after the seizure stops. Patients are then transferred to the recovery area. They stay until blood pressure and alertness have returned to normal, which usually takes about 20 minutes.

Who is a good candidate for ECT?

Ideal candidates for ECT tend to be severely depressed individuals who have failed multiple drug therapies, McCall said. Less commonly, patients present with severe disease, for example, the first time they are seen is in the emergency room after a suicide attempt.

Does ECT change your personality?

ECT does not change a person’s personality, nor is it designed to treat those with just primary “personality disorders.” ECT can cause transient short-term memory — or new learning — impairment during a course of ECT, which fully reverses usually within one to four weeks after an acute course is stopped.

Can you drive during ECT treatment?

Each person is different. You should not drive for at least 24 hours following your treatment, unless advised otherwise by your doctor. Some people may need to wait longer before they resume these activities.

What happens when 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.

What does ECT do to brain?

It may promote changes in how brain cells communicate with each other at synapses and it may stimulate the development of new brain cells. ECT may flood the brain with neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine, which are known to be involved in conditions like depression and schizophrenia.

Does ECT really work?

ECT is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and has been shown to be highly effective, giving some patients full reversal of severe depression symptoms. Overall, ECT is approximately 80 percent effective when a patient is a good candidate.

Why is ECT bad?

ECT is different from TMS therapy The nature of the procedure itself, which triggers a brief seizure through electrical current, can lead to side effects such as cardiovascular complications, blood pressure concerns, and even memory loss.

Can ECT make you worse?

ECT may have a role in people who have comorbid depression and anxiety. The concern of some psychiatrists is that while ECT may help with depressive symptoms, it could worsen anxiety symptoms, including obsessional thoughts or panic attacks.

What to expect after ECT therapy?

When you awaken, you may experience a period of disorientation lasting from a few minutes to several hours. Headaches, jaw pain, and muscle soreness may occur. ECT requires a series of treatments, often initiated two to three times a week for a few weeks and then the frequency is tapered down.

What are some complications of ECT?

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a safe and effective treatment for severe mood disorders. Rarely there can be serious complications, such as postictal agitation, cardiovascular compromise, prolonged seizures, and status epilepticus, all of which are important for the clinician to recognize and treat.

What is the success rate of ECT?

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.