Dear Roxie – Thank you for the reassuring post. I had ECT when I was just 20 and I had many bilateral treatments. I had some memory loss, but it all came back. I was not “brain damaged” as many people claim happens and which no medical research has ever shown. In fact, what I have found is that new neuronal growth or something of the sort can be stimulated. The real research is on the Internet in published and reliable medical journals where all the anti-ECT vitriole is not backed up by any scientific based publications. However, I think that it bodes well to make sure you have a competent and well-rated doctor.
I also feel that many of the people who are complaining about unremitting memory loss have probably not given it enough time to resolve it all. For me, I have found that after three years of chronic low-grade depression punctuated by the three of the most severe and prolonged depressive episodes I’ve ever had to date, have caused me some serious cognitive problems. From what I have read as well, untreated long-term depressive disorder can cause areas in the brain some potential atropy.
Being that I had ECT before, I wanted to add that I went on to college, graduated, and went on to get a graduate degree after that. So ECT did nothing to lower my intelligence nor my ability to think clearly and articulate well and write. I also never had another major out-of-the-blue panic attack for some reason. I can still get anxiety, but the full on panic attacks stopped after ECT for some reason.
Now I am about to turn 47 and over time and after many medications to try and keep the depression in control, as the ECT relief only last so many months, I am about to embark on another ECT journey after considering it seriously for three years now. I just can’t wait anymore. I want off Cymbalta, which may be making me more tired than I need. I stopped Adderall as well and I’m still bad off.
I get so depressed, I get severe “depression headaches” that cause me to feel suicidal and I just am tired of sleep walking in a fog of despair through my lie. I want to get well and get back to school or work somehow so I can get a life again and I feel strongly that getting a jump start and disrupting whatever horrendous jumble of crap is going on in my brain, is the only solution now. I do not want to mess with TMS even. I am out of time and have heard from other severely clinically depressed people that it didn’t help them and was not worth the cost.
I ended up on SSDI finally about six years ago and I want to get back to work badly. In retrospect I should have gotten this depression treated more aggressively a long time ago as it just got more and more severe over time, the past few years especially.
But mainly I am writing to see how you are doing now. Are you still in remission or have you found that meds now work better. I would love an update. Thanks!