Electroshock Therapy

Today is Psycho Saturday. Over the next few weeks I’ll go into the various psychological issues in Shadows.  Since Sarah experiences an illegal form of ECT, I thought I’d go into what ECT is supposed to be about.

The definition of Electroshock or Electroconvulsive therapy is a treatment for depression, bipolar disorder, catatonia, and some psychotic disorders, that uses electricity to induce a seizure.

The possible adverse effects from an ECT are:

Confusion

Memory loss

Headache

Hypotension

Tachycardia

Allergic reaction to the anesthesia

There is even a slight risk of death – 3 out of 10,000 people. (Yes, I actually found that piece of info on a medical website)

The legal way of doing an ECT is as follows:

Under general anesthesia, a brief shock, lasting several seconds is given to your head to induce a seizure.  You’re also given some sort of medication (couldn’t find out what exactly – they didn’t share that little titbit) to prevent the seizure from spreading throughout the body. An ECT is usually given 3 times a week for 6 to 12 sessions.

Next week I’ll go into the history and other interesting stuff about ECT’s.

Have you ever had ECT or know anybody who has? What have you heard about it?

My thanks to the Medical Encyclopedia and the Medline Plus website.

3 thoughts on “Electroshock Therapy

  1. I don’t really know anyone who has had this treatment. But the statistics in reference to possible death are minimal, I think, compared to many much more common procedures. One of the leading causes of death is properly prescribed pharmaceuticals.

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