Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)

Need help in learning more about ECT Treatment for Schizophrenia and asking you to share your experience with this Treatment or if you know someone else who has gone through it.

My son is currently in a Hospital and refusing to take Invega Shot. he has been given Respiredol but he is still psychotic and disrespectful to Hospital Staff and also to me when I talk to him on the phone.

The Psychiatrist is suggesting ECT treatment but I have a concern and I do not feel comfortable with it.
Any feedback is appreciated. If you do not think it is a good option, please explain why? and if you do not think it is a good option, Please explain why?

Enter ECT in the search box and read @GSSP remarks of his daughter’s experience. It was successful for her.


While I have no experience with ECT, I’ll comment that most people’s negative impressions of ECT are based in media representations of ECT and other folklore. I was involved with the production of three different plays which featured ECT and each misrepresented and over dramatized the procedure to varying degrees. I raised objections to the director on the specific treatment of ECT in One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest, but was overruled citing the audience’s expectations from the movie representation, and the literary and authorial intent which afforded Kesey latitudes with his representations of indigenous people and the seriously mentally ill that wouldn’t fly today.

Even Next To Normal which deservedly won a Pulitzer Prize for drama, while largely factually correct, took great liberties with memory loss aspects as a plot contrivance which played into audience fears and expectations based largely on other media representations. The original title for the project was “Feeling Electric” and started out as a more obviously fanciful representation of the procedure and its impact that carried into a more grounded production.

I say this, because GSSP has an irreverent style that leans into imagery from this folklore that may be misconstrued. Don’t take it at face value, or take it to mean he isn’t the dedicated and thoughtful caregiver he is.


I guess it depends on the person. not everyone had success with ECT.
I think medicine is a safer option.

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If I recall, @GSSP ’s daughter did not respond to meds, her mother was also med resistant.


Not only that, but I believe his wife had a bad bout of Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) which he attributed to permanent damage to her brain. While rare, it’s a serious risk of neuroleptics that requires immediate attention, and this along with Tardive Dyskinesia should be a reminder that pharmaceutical treatment is not risk-free. In general ECT isn’t a front-line treatment, and I doubt that the psychiatrist hasn’t weighed potential risks to benefits.


Maggotbrane, in your opinion ECT is not front-line treatment and also not the best option.
I agree with you.


Respectfully, I didn’t say that. Just because a treatment isn’t “front-line” doesn’t mean it couldn’t be a best option. For example Clozapine isn’t a a frontline treatment in the United States, but for some it is their best option. Many on this forum credit it with giving them their children or lives back. It carries risks, it requires extra monitoring, it doesn’t mix well with cigarette smoking, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. It still can be be just as life-changing as ECT for some people.

Frankly, I feel you are looking for validation for ignoring doctors advice and potentially robbing your child of a better life. And seemingly without any discussion of why you aren’t comfortable with it, and whether this is grounded in reality, a feeling or just fiction. This I can not do.

I can tell you I had a bad experience with Risperdal. It led me to a severe depression that nearly ended my life. At the time it was touted as the next “miracle drug” that didn’t carry the risks of Clozapine. So I went back to my old treatment with the risk that I might develop Tardive Dyskinesia and other side effects. And later other drugs, including one that GSSP credited with “frying” his wife’s brain. Still I recognize risperdone is a helpful and valid treatment for other people.

There are two constants I see on this forum: what works for one person, may not work for another, and ignoring doctors advice is rarely a recipe for a good outcome. My success in recovery came from listening to doctors and psychologists, and trying as many treatments they recommended as I could tolerate.

You made this “Freudian slip” in your original post that tells me you’ve already made up your mind— to ignore and invalidate your doctor’s and other people’s advice:

As they say, good luck with that.


I do not agree with you on prejudging me.
I consulted with 2 Physciatrics. one of them in my State and I was advised that ETC cannot be approved with my Guardianship and the court will not approve it. it has a high bar with my County Court. the judge will not approve it.
I also Spoke to a Psychiatric from Manhattan, NY who is a family friend, she told me not to consider ETC due to side effects and memory loss and she said also that it will not help my son with his diagnosis, She told me that ETC is effective for Several depressed individuals with suicidal symptoms.
in addition, the hospital where my son is treated now does not have a good rating (2.4/5).

I also read on Youtube that ETC is not a magic pill. Someone still needs to do phytotherapy and take medicine and do more ETC Treatments which cannot be approved by the court in my State.

My son was taking Clozapine and it has helped him but the issue is that he wants to stop as soon as he gets better.
my Psychiatric friend from Manhattan, NY advised me that Injectible would be a good option for my son since he is non-compliant on meds…

I watched a Youtube video that brought tears to my eye, a lady who has severe depression took the ETC and she experienced a long-term memory loss after the 5th session.

ECT: Please Watch Before Undergoing Electroconvulsive Therapy:


I stand by my statement that you appear to have made up your mind before you started posting. Thank you for adding additional context, but I’m doubtful anything posted in response would have changed your mind. If I mischaracterized your lack of an open mind in the context of

and the aforementioned “Freudian Slip”, I apologize. I know how it feels to have statements mischaracterized without apology.

My point is ALL therapies pose risks, and professionals, insurance companies, states, countries, psychiatrist friends, individuals who post on YouTube and organizations like NAMI aren’t immune to propaganda or lobbying by powerful forces like “Big Pharma” or others who push a particular agenda. The variation in success of psychiatric treatment around the world (which tends toward the abysmal in the US) and what’s considered front-line treatment is testimony to this. And for any given therapy you can find anecdotal evidence of both changed and ruined lives.

I also stand by support of all recommended treatments that are tolerated. You found you couldn’t tolerate ECT for your stated reasons. That’s your choice, and I don’t doubt that it’s a difficult one. And I unironically say, good luck with that and any other treatments your son will tolerate.

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Thank you for your apology.
this is not my choice. My son has to agree with the treatment.
I decided to give it a try with ECT but when the nurse approaching him to discuss the ECT with him, he almost hit her. He called me later to tell me that I am trying to kill him with lethal injection (LOL).
His paranoid brain did not understand the benefits. The nurse called me that said that she would not want to try ECT anymore with him even if he agrees later because if his aggressive behavior.
I feel that I least we gave it a chance and it did not work!

And for any given therapy you can find anecdotal evidence of both changed and ruined lives.
I agree with your statement.
this Illness is very challenging but I know somehow that my Son he will get stabilize on some medicine and I am hoping as he grow older, his relapses will reduce and he will understand the benefits of staying on meds or trying a different type of Theraphy…
Praying about it always…


Keep trying. Every path. Every gate. Every half open window. Every tiny light in the distance. Keep trying.


Thanks for bringing the conversation and posting your original questions here. I was unaware that CST was still even legal. Interesting the legal channels your county required as well as the practitioner’s assessment in the end based on aggressive behaviors. Enlightening.


you are right. as long as I live, I will keep helping him until my last breath of life. Amen