Today, I called and left a message for the ECT department. I made the decision last week to stop doing ECT and I even talked to my psychiatrist about it; all I had to do to follow through on that decision was to cancel my appointment. I’m really happy that I’m stopping these treatments because it is way too hard on my mind and my body. However, I’m extremely nervous that I could slip into an even worse depression or manic episode. It doesn’t seem as if the ECT treatments have been helping me for quite a while now. My concern is what happens if it was helping and I just didn’t realize it. If I go too long without these treatments, then I would have to start back three times a week, and I can’t handle that.

I’m taking a huge risk by stopping the treatments, but I also have to listen to my body. My husband agrees that the ECT treatments aren’t helping me. He agrees with my decision to stop the treatments. It’s nice to have someone who sees me every day agree with my decision. It makes me feel a little more confident in my choice to stop. I’m curious how long it will take for some of the side effects, such as memory loss, to improve?

Are there other people who have gone through ECT treatments on a regular basis for a while and then chose to stop? If so, what happened when you stopped? How long did it take for your side effects to improve?

2 thoughts on “I Canceled ECT

  1. What type of negative symptoms other than memory loss did you experience? ECT is something I am considering but not 100% because I am concerned about the memory loss. I’ve read/heard that the memory loss is different for everyone as far as when it returns. I hope it works out for you and that you don’t experience any negative effects of discontinuing early.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The memory loss is usually only temporary. I happened to have more memory loss than normal. My amount of memory loss is very rare. In fact, all of the side effects are temporary. The day of the treatment and sometimes for a couple days after, I struggled with physical pain. I had a lot of jaw pain and headaches, and the rest of my body was also sore. I had come confusion, but only for a few hours, sometimes for the rest of that day at the most.

      I did the ECT treatments for 15 months. They were very helpful in the beginning. I was in a major depression and ECT was the only thing that helped get me out of it. I’m very grateful for what ECT did for me, but it’s too much for me to deal with at this time. I do think that ECT is extremely helpful and I would suggest it to a friend if they have already tried pretty much everything else.


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