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Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)

What is ECT?

  • Procedure, done under general anesthesia, in which small electric currents are passed through the brain, intentionally triggering a brief seizure
  • ECT causes changes in brain chemistry that can quickly reverse symptoms of certain mental health conditions

What Is ECT Used To Treat?

  • Severe depression
  • Treatment-resistant depression
  • Severe mania
  • Catatonia
  • Agitation and aggression in people with dementia

Things To Consider

  • ECT should be a family decision. Side effects can include confusion, memory loss, physical side effects, and medical complications
  • We typically require a referral from the patient's primary care provider or mental health provider, but we can accept self-referrals
  • Patients will have an evaluation with our medical staff to determine if ECT is appropriate
  • ECT often works when other treatments are unsuccessful and when the full course of treatment is completed, but it may not work for everyone