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Re: ECT ruined my memory!

Posted by ChicagoKat on October 6, 2012, at 9:51:12

In reply to ECT ruined my memory! ChicagoKat, posted by AlexCanada on October 5, 2012, at 21:40:17

Oh Alex, I'm so sorry to hear what you are going through with your memeory and cognition problems. I wish I could help.
I'm glad I put that post up, b/c I felt like maybe I was the only one who had such a bad experience with ect, but it seems, sadly, that there are people who are even worse off than me. I wish we could all get together and form some sort of class acion suit; but I do remember (of course it would be one of the things I remember, HA), that they made us sign our rights to sue away before treatment began. I feel sorry for all the many people who trusted their docs and went like sheep to the slaughter to have their brains damaged.

> Sorry to hear about your negative experiences but hopefully your post can serve as a warning to many.
> I myself was in dire need of relief almost a decade ago when my problems started. I had lousy doctors and they would not listen when a certain medication was pushing my anxiety through to the breaking point. I was so desperate that I gave in to ECT. Huge mistake. After ECT I have had persistent LONG term memory problems. Antero Grade Memory Loss. Thankfully it is not severe to the point where I am a vegetable.
> Each day is like waking up new. What happened yesterday? Mild recollection. And if a few days pass then who the hell knows what happened. Short term memory is an issue too but not as severe as my long term memory issues. I have incredibly difficultly retaining any new information. I can read about a medication 50 times. Day in, day out, study this, study that, and it never sticks! Even if my melancholic depression symptoms improve from a future medication (parnate stopped working for me a while back) my memory issues will remain as they always have ever since ECT. I would be lost if I didn't write things down all the damn time. Also my intelligence in general is highly compromised. I used to be a genius. I was the kind of kid who people would call a smart *ss. I had such a creative mind and was so full of possibility. Most of that is now lost.
> I been seeking cognition boosting medication desperately. Memantine is the next thing I will be trying.
> If anyone has any other suggestions please let me know. Hopefully something available in canada.
> For anyone out there please avoid ECT unless you are absolutely severely suicidal and have ruled out various medications. If you damage your cognition it will make it all the more difficult to search for relief of what ails you when you do not have the memory retention.
> > I just want to get a discussion going, get other people's opinions and experiences. I know I should prob post this on the alt. tx site, but it seems no one ever goes there.
> >
> > In my case, I felt that ect did way more harm than good. It not only didn't help, it made my depression, and especiallly, my anxiety worse. Plus it not only affected my memory, it negatively affected my cognition. And after I had it, my meds stopped working...may be coincidence, may not be. Anyways, after I had it I had to stop working and go on disability. And I had two hospitalizations due to suicidality, which I had never had before.
> >
> > After I had it I did a lot more research on it, which I wish I had done before I had it. I was so desperate to feel better that I just believed what my doctor told me which was that it was 80-90% efficacious. HA! Everyone I met during my hospitalizations said they wish they had not done it. In my research, I found out things they don't tell you before you go through with it. Of course, there's every chance these findings were wrong or misleading, though they did all come from published articles in well-respected journals. I regret I do not have the references. Anyways, the first thing they don't tell you is that not only does ect affect memory, but that it severely affects cognition. One article mentioned that the IQ of most individuals goes down by 40-60 pts. That's a hell of a lot! I used to have an IQ of 154, which means I am now down to 100. And I feel less intelligent than I used to, which sucks. Another thing they don't tell you is that ect definitely causes brain damage. A study was done with some poor rats; one group was given ect, adjusted to be equivalent to the normal dosages humans receive, the other was not. The rats were then "sacrificed", and they found pinpoint hemorrhages scattered throughout the brains of the rats who had had ect. I forget what the P value was, but it was very low. And it is only natural to believe that the more treatments one has, the more damage is done. Lastly, they don't tell you, at least I wasn't told, that even if it works, the effects don't last, so maintenance treatments are required. Which just means more cost, more memory loss, more cognitive impairment, and more brain damage. I have heard that people who have had ect have had strokes secondary to it later in life. That bit was just something I heard, so I can't say the info came from a peer-reviewed article. But it does make sense given the brain damage that is caused.
> >
> > OK, my rant is over. As I said, it's just my opinion that ect is dangerous and not as efficacious as claimed. And I don't have the citations to the articles I read. And I know that ect really has helped some people. Like I said, I just wanted to hear other people's experiences and opinions. So please no attacking me for my own opinion. We are each entitled to our own.
> > Kat
> >
> >




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