Wednesday, December 28, 2011

ECT Update, and Why I Hate Seroquel

No, I haven't fallen off the face of the earth.  Like most people, I got distracted by Christmas and haven't updated in a little while.  Here's hoping you and yours had a lovely holiday and are getting some much needed rest and relaxation.

I am now in the "maintenance" phase of my ECT treatments.  I finished up my "acute" phase last week on Friday, with my sixth treatment.  Now I'm on to one treatment a week for a month, which is much less of a hassle, especially considering the treatment facility is 40 minutes away.  The bad news, though, is that while I was pretty sure the treatments were helping the first week or two, now I'm not so sure -- I seem to have slipped back into a funk and am generally intolerable to be around.  I'm trying to tell myself that maybe it's just the stress of the holiday (like I wrote last week, it's hard to determine what ups and downs are due to having bipolar disorder and what are due to general life stress).  I hate the thought that I may have to go back to 3 ECT treatments a week for another few weeks to try to stave off a heavier depression, but if I do, so be it.

I'm also tired -- very, very tired.  And I'm not sure if it's a side effect of the ECT, or the increased dosage of Seroquel I'm on.  When I was hospitalized in early December, the doctor increased my Seroquel and decreased my lithium in anticipation of starting ECT treatments, because lithium and ECT don't play well together.  I went from 50 - 75 mgs of Seroquel daily to 450+ mgs daily.  I think it does what it's supposed to do, which is even out my moods and make me a little less irritable and raw -- but it also makes me really sluggish.  Add the ECT treatments (and anesthesia) I'm undergoing, and I'm pretty worthless. 

It's so irritating to me that I have to make a choice between being an ugly-acting, depressed witch and being an exhausted, useless sloth.  I guess I should just be grateful that there are drugs that do help depression (more or less), and just look at the side effects as a small price to pay for the benefits they provide.  But it's still frustrating.  Ultimately, though, there's not much I can do about it -- just hope for a speedy end to the ECT treatments so I can get back up on a therapeutic level of lithium and leave the Seroquel behind.  Here's to hoping!

1 comment:

  1. I am considering ECT and one of my goals is to get off the 300 mg of Seroquel i am on now. It is causing urinary problems and the Geodon is causing tremors. These atypical anti convulsants are a real mess. I've been on them a long time and hate what they are doing to my body.

    Better luck with the ECT.