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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Article Home Adult and Senior Health Electroconvulsive therapy(ECT)

Electroconvulsive therapy(ECT)

ECT is an medical intervention procedure done to treat psychiatric diseases like Severe Depression, Mania and Schizophrenia.

 

 

ECT is a procedure in which electric current is passed through the pain to trigger an episode of seizure. There will be a lot of changes in the chemical reactions in the brain and this is believed to help which can reduce the severity of the symptoms.

Procedure

The patient or his guardian has to first give a written consent for ECT(procedure followed for many interventions and surgeries). Before ECT, the patient is anesthetized. Then electrical stimulation is given upto 8 seconds through electrodes to induce a seizure. It is usually done for 2-3 times/week for 3 weeks and then gradually tapered to 1 time/week. This can be continued upto 1 year. ECT is usually given along with medications, psychotherapy and behavioural therapy.

 

Risks

As with any major procedure ECT does carry some risks but this can be minimized by giving accurately calculated dosage of Electric current. Some of the risks are

 

 

 

Results

ECT is proved to be an effective short term treatment for Depression. Will require medications or repeat ECT to prevent relapses.