Can ECT help in Adhd treatment?

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    • #106300

      Hi, I’m a 32y miss diagnosed adhd. I got my diagnosis about 3 years ago, and by then things gotten to an extreme. My diagnosis was made by the psychiatrist who treats my depression. No one hade never told me anything about adhd before him, not my previous psychiatrist nor the several psychologists I’ve been through all my life. He imediatly put me on meds, but I have another problem.

      I’m resistant to medication. I’ve been severed depressed for 15y and meds don’t seem to help. I’ve taken everything you can imagine, for all the right amount of time. It even start making some progress (when taken in high dosage) but after a few weeks they stop again. Adhd meds on highest dosage didn’t seem to have a significant effect on me.

      I am a candidate to ECT because my depression reached an unbearable level, and I would like to know if anyone has info about ETC treatment having an effect on adhd.

      Thank you very much in advance.

      • This topic was modified 3 years ago by liu. Reason: Correcting grammar errors
    • #106303

      Just to add some info: I try to practice sports and eat healthy the best that I can. Those are not the kind of answers I’m looking for here (any stupid magazine could tell me a healthy life is better for me).

      When you are severe depressed sometimes you can’t even get up and wash yourself, so don’t tell me to go out there and live without a treatment.

    • #106865

      I have had 14 sessions of ECT, am diagnosed with PTSD primarily. I have suffered from depression, like yourself (and hate when people tell me I don’t need meds or a doctor and to just get over it). I was depressed to the point where I was in a catatonic state, the medications I was on for 8-9 years have very little effect on me, changes to them became taxing because I had tried so many (like yourself). I also struggle with ADHD, which wasn’t being treated because I lived in Vegas and every doctor is hesitant to prescribe stimulants for ADHD because of the major drug crisis there. I sat down one night and decided that a lobotomy was impossible and I needed something effective… ECT was the option next to TMS.
      I highly recommend ECT, it helped me a lot. I continued taking the medication I was on and I began to break out of my depression slowly. I am one of the lucky people that did not suffer from long-term memory loss after ECT, but have met others that sadly have. This particular person told me that the benefits of ECT outweighed the memory loss; he was OK with it because he was able to live again.
      The reason why I stopped ECT and didn’t progress to a full recovery was because my psychiatrist was not a part of the process, she was with the VA, I was receiving ECT at a local hospital and the management of ECT is up to you and your psychiatrist. I think ECT would have worked well for me if my psychiatrist at the time had more involvement. But the VA is inconsistent and I could not be seen as often as I should have been during ECT.
      In summary, ECT will most likely help you. There are risks, and I had to consider those before I decided to do it, as you will too. The benefits of ECT are greater than the risk; and living with depression that is so crippling that you cannot function and all medication has failed is worse than not giving it a try. ECT is like a medication, you start slowly, unilateral, and you progress to bilateral; you may begin with one treatment a week and slowly increase. When you decide to start ECT, make sure your psychiatrist is on board with you 100% of the process, beginning to end, and he/she should also be following up with you to assess your mood/symptoms so that ECT/medications can be adjusted accordingly. It does help, it is done very safely and is very effective with extreme depression.
      Good luck, if I don’t get a response. I hope that you try it because it is safe and the benefits definitely outweigh the risks.

    • #106866

      Also, does it help ADHD? Indirectly, it does. ECT is a treatment for depression, not ADHD. When your depression starts to lift with ECT, you are more able to effectively cope with the symptoms of ADHD and depression, if that makes any sense. Hope this is helpful. Don’t give up.
      If I could, I would try ECT again! But I would have to be 100% positive that my psychiatrist was on board and working with me. My psychiatrist was awful in Vegas, she really let me down when I needed her the most. I’ve since moved to another state and ECT is not administered in my area. I’d have to go to another city to do it.

    • #107523

      Michelle, thank you so much for answering me and giving your feedback. It’s great to read I’m not alone. My current psychiatrist thinks ect is not a good choice for people with adhd and he wants me to try ketamine. But my previous doctor was against ketamine and pro ect. I trust them both so I’m very confused.

      One thing I know: one cannot spend a whole life suffering wit adhd and depression. It’s nonsense to live like this.

    • #117651


      I just wanted to share that in the past I had very bad ADHD and found relief through Neurofeedback. A much less invasive treatment than ECT. Simple, painless and I found complete relief from living like the Tazmanian Devil.

      Most recetly I have been battling the most severe depression I have ever had (I am post menopause). I finally went back and got 14 sessions of Neurofeedback and bought an Alpha-Stim device (used for depression/anxiety/insomnia) that I use at home for 60 minutes a day.

      I am now finally free from that horrible depression.

      Please consider looking into both these treatments. They offer the possibility for permanent relief.


    • #117675
      Dr. Eric

      I haven’t heard of it for ADHD, but if you have depression that is making things worse… treating the depression may help.

      There is also some promising, but too premature to make promises off of, research on transcranial magnetic treatments.

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