Tag Archives: ECT

ECT Treatment #2

ECT Treatment #2

Today (October 1, 2014) was my second round of ECT treatment. You’ll be reading this tomorrow because I just don’t seem to have it in me to leave the hospital on days I get the treatment done. This one went just as well as the last one, except for the fact that I woke up crying. I have no idea why, but I cried all the way back to my room where they gave me some Gravol and I passed out for the rest of the afternoon.

I’ve never had a good relationship with anesthetic and so I blame it on that. After I was forced to have a caesarian birth with my son (not the spinal block kind, but the kind where they knock you out completely) almost nine years ago now, I woke up the same way. Hopefully Friday will be better. Not that today was bad. It actually went pretty well. I’m happy with the way things are progressing so far. I don’t feel any different, but perhaps once I rest up over the weekend I’ll see a little bit of a change. Then it will be three more treatments next week. I’m not sure how many I’ll have all together in this beginning stage yet, but we’ll see. I’m willing to stick with it if it’s going to make me better.

The hospital itself is fine, all except for the food, but since when does any hospital have good food. Thank god for hubby who comes to get me and takes me to get something decent to eat once in a while.

Well, that’s about it for now. I hope all of you are doing well. The next update will probably go up sometime during the weekend.

Chow for now.

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ECT Day One

lightning

Today was ECT treatment day one. I had the bilateral procedure (both sides of the brain) done and I have to say it was not at all like I was expecting. The anticipation of it was much worse than the procedure itself. When I woke up I didn’t even realize it was over. I was laying on the stretcher thinking, “Geze, I hope they take me in soon.” Then someone appeared over me and told me they’d sit me up in a few minutes.

The treatment is done in a separate building on the hospital grounds and I was taken back through a series of underground tunnels. I assume they took me there the same way, but I don’t remember that at all.

Right now I feel alright. I’m a little out of sorts and have a slight headache. If I stand up too fast I get a little vertigo, but it’s not bad. I’m writing this from my room and will post it tomorrow when I feel more up to going out. For today I think I’ll stay put. I have The Big Bang Theory on DVD and will probably just marathon that for today.

Wednesday will be treatment number two and hopefully it will go as well as the first one. I have three scheduled so far and beyond that I’m not sure what the plan is yet. So far I’m very hopeful. If today was any indication, this treatment is nothing to be afraid of, but I’ll reserve my full judgement for when it’s all finished.

Chow for now.

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Stumbling In The Dark

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Hello Blogosphere!

Last time I wrote about my decision to begin ECT treatment. Looks like that’s going to happen on Monday, Wednesday and Friday of next week. That will be the first round and we’ll go from there. I am very much hoping for a good result.

I’m sitting here at Starbucks, looking out the big glass windows and it’s a beautiful day in Nova Scotia. 26C (That’s 79F for you Americans.) Everyone is out in their shorts and tank tops, sipping their Frappuccino’s and enjoying summer’s one last hurrah. They all seem so happy. I wish I felt as happy as they did. I can fake it pretty well. Today however I am just jealous. They might be faking it too, who knows? But they are smiling and laughing and I can’t feel happy at all, not even a little.

I’m hoping that in a few weeks that will change. I’m tired of feeling this way. Right now it feels like the world is closing in. The only thing keeping me going is that perhaps this treatment will cause the world to open up.

Terrible depression is hard to explain, but if you’ve been there I don’t have to tell you because you already know. That’s the place I’m in. I’m stumbling around in the dark right now, but I hope to join those of you in the sun, sooner rather than later. God, I hope this works. People have asked if I’m worried about the risks. Sure, but you know what? I’ll do anything…ANYTHIHG to stop feeling this way.

So, send me all the good vibes you can muster starting Monday. I really need it. A lot of you have expressed your support and I can’t tell you how much it means. I just need you to bear with me for a little bit longer.

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Decision

storm clouds

As any of you who read this blog on a regular basis know, I suffer from psychotic depression. Not that there’s really been a ‘regular basis’ of sorts for the last few months as I’ve kind of disappeared because of it. I have felt unwell for a while now. But today I made a decision.

Before I tell you what that is, just let me also say that I have been dealing with this illness for over two decades now. I have been patient, I have tried treatment after treatment, some with much (albeit temporary) success and some with none at all. I am a big believer in psychiatric medication, and in fact, I would not be sitting here today writing this without it. Some refer to anti-depressants as, ‘happy pills’. Believe me, they are not happy pills, but they are, ‘I think I’ll stick around for a little longer and not jump in front of that truck today’ pills. But lately their effects have been either waning, or the condition is just getting worse.

This morning I had a visit with my psychiatrist and told her I wanted to try ECT, also known as Shock Treatment. Yes, it’s gotten that bad. She suggested new medications or an increase in the one I’m on, and I told her that although I’m not opposed to that idea, it’s a process that may take years, and I’ve already been dealing with this for a couple of decades. I’m 39 years old. I can’t work and I have two young children that I don’t feel I’m caring for or enjoying the way I should be. This treatment has an 80% effectiveness rate and I didn’t see any reason not to try it at this point.

She agreed.

So now I just have to wait. In many places they will give you ECT on an outpatient basis, but not in Halifax. You have to be admitted for the first course of treatment. So on Monday she’s going to begin the process of getting me a bed and getting started.

Am I scared? I’m fucking petrified! But I’m more scared of the years I’m going to lose if something isn’t done. I have the potential to get much, much worse. I do have an advantage over a lot of people in that I’ve seen how effective this treatment can be first hand. I’ve had dozens of hospitalizations over my lifetime and have watched other patients receive ECT and the positive results were dramatic. Even though I have this awful depression, I now at least have some hope.

I’ve been mulling this over for a while and have done a lot of research. The good, the bad, the ugly. I know what the risks are and, to me, they are worth it. So, depending on how I feel, I’ll probably blog about it. One of the side effects is memory loss, but for most people it’s minimal and for some it’s none at all. I may totally forget that I said that. On my return home I plan on telling my family that I’ve forgotten how to cook though. Dinner? What’s that? I think you guys better do it.

Stay tuned.

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