electroconvulsive therapy

Real Patient Experiences with ECT and Perspectives on ECT

→ April 24, 2016 - 35 Comments

Real Patient Experiences with ECT and Perspectives on ECT

It’s difficult to find real patient experiences with, and perspectives on, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) online. Well, it’s easy to find patient experiences and people’s perspectives on ECT but what tends to happen is that those that scream about ECT the loudest are the only ones people hear. I suspect this is thanks to the extreme animosity held on at least one side of the debate.

I aim to change this with real data from real people who have experienced ECT. What I want is data that will prove or disprove the assumptions that people make about ECT. I really hope you’ll support me in this effort.

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Pros and Cons of Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)

→ May 19, 2015 - 30 Comments

Pros and Cons of Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)

The pros and cons of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) are actually quite numerous but in this post I will try to, unbiasedly, lay out the basic pros and cons for anyone considering ECT as a treatment. I am likely uniquely qualified to do this as I am very educated about ECT (Yes, I still have that book in the works. Did I mention I’m really busy?) and I’ve also had ECT. This does not mean it’s right for everyone, however. Do consider the pros and cons of electroconvulsive therapy carefully before you make your own mind up with the help of a doctor.

[Note: I am running a survey on real patients’ experiences with, and perspectives on, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). If you’ve had ECT and want your voice heard, please take the survey here. More detailed information on the ECT survey can be found here.]

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I’m Not a Statistic! – Yes, You Are a Healthcare Statistic

→ June 22, 2012 - 27 Comments

Apparently I’m the only one that understands the concept and usage of healthcare statistics.

Recently a commenter got angry at me for saying this:

“. . . Are there people who have had a bad experience with ECT [electroconvulsive therapy]? Yes. Are there people who have had very bad experiences with ECT? Yes. But then, I was hit by a car, so things happen. It’s not really the car’s fault. . . ”

My point, of course, is that there are people who have bad experiences, I would never deny that. But there are people who have bad experiences with everything. That doesn’t mean it’s the typical experience. We work hard to reduce traffic deaths and injuries in North America and doctors work hard to try to implement ECT in the best way too.

A Commenter on Statistics

But the commenter felt,

“. . . And you wonder why are people anti-psychiatry? Because they had horrible horrible experience and are consider “oooops” and downplayed number in statistic . . .”

Well, um, yes. That’s what statistics are.

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How Does Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) Work?

→ March 26, 2012 - 38 Comments

How Does Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) Work?

In the book I’m writing on electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) I’ve had to address the question as to how ECT works. However, in spite of the fact that ECT has been in use since the 1930s we really don’t know how ECT works.

But recently we may have gotten a bit closer to figuring it out.

[Note: I am running a survey on real patients’ experiences with, and perspectives on, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). If you’ve had ECT and want your voice heard, please take the survey here. More detailed information on the ECT survey can be found here.]

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Have You Had ECT? Help Others and Tell Me Where

→ February 23, 2012 - 117 Comments

As many of you know I’m writing a book on electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).  This book will hopefully answer all the questions a person might have before undergoing ECT  treatment as well as share with them my personal experience and the experience of others.

And I’ve decided to include, at the back of the book a list of hospitals that offer ECT to help people who want the treatment with a starting point on how to get it.

There’s just one problem – there’s no central repository on who offers ECT treatment.

[Note: I am running a survey on real patients’ experiences with, and perspectives on, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). If you’ve had ECT and want your voice heard, please take the survey here. More detailed information on the ECT survey can be found here.]

ECT-Offering Facilities

Please Help Me with the List of Hospitals that Offer ECT

So I’m asking for your help. If you know of a facility that offers ECT, please let me know in the comments below and I’ll add it to the list. You’ll be helping me and helping others as well. Please include hospitals in Canada and the US.

And, of course, if you have any questions about ECT, also feel free to comment on those and I’ll make sure the answers are here and in the book.

Thanks.

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Dr. Oz Show – The Shock That Could Save Your Life – Electroshock Therapy for Depression

→ January 25, 2012 - 50 Comments

Dr. Oz Show – The Shock That Could Save Your Life – Electroshock Therapy for Depression

As many people know the Dr. Oz show, did 30 minutes today on electroshock therapy. I’m going to talk a little about the Dr. Oz show’s representation of electroshock therapy and add a few additional facts.

[Note: I am running a survey on real patients’ experiences with, and perspectives on, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). If you’ve had ECT and want your voice heard, please take the survey here. More detailed information on the ECT survey can be found here.]

First off, the Dr. Oz show is a source of entertainment, like anything else on TV, so he added drama that wasn’t particularly necessary. That is the way of the show, and TV, however. Specifically, the show started off with scenes of electroshock therapy being given pre-1950 which is when you see people having convulsions in the bad old days before people were anesthetized during treatments. This is not the best way to start a show that is supposed to educate about current treatment, but he does balance this later on.

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Doctor Background Checks; ECT in Film; New Borderline Criteria – 3 New Things

→ December 1, 2011 - 5 Comments

Doctor Background Checks; ECT in Film; New Borderline Criteria – 3 New Things

Today we return to my 3 New Things series so I can touch on three new pieces of information I’ve found this week. This week I talk about:

  • How to get a background check on a doctor
  • The sorry portrayal of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) in film
  • The newly-proposed diagnostic criteria for personality disorders in the DSM-V

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Can’t Not Talk About Shock Therapy (Electroconvulsive Therapy, ECT)

→ March 10, 2010 - 6 Comments

I hadn’t planned on discussing my electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) experience with many people. I found it terrible, scarring, not to mention futile and immensely embarrassing; those aren’t generally feelings I like to talk about. I still find the idea of shock therapy, well, shocking. Incomprehensible. Absolutely impossible.

[Note: I am running a survey on real patients’ experiences with, and perspectives on, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). If you’ve had ECT and want your voice heard, please take the survey here. More detailed information on the ECT survey can be found here.]

Write About What You Know — I Know ECT

The problem with being a writer is that you write what you know, and you’re driven to write what plagues you most. At least I am. I can’t write about fluffy bunnies and sparkling rainbows, because these aren’t the things that occupy my conscious mind. But ECT. Ironically it erased pieces of my brain only to seemingly permanently occupy others. I’m acutely aware of its happening and yet find it completely unbelievable.

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