Is it reliable to use MECT to "restart the brain" for patients with depression?

Some netizens said that if MECT can erase some memories, they will choose to do it themselves.

Picture from Weibo screenshot

  Recently, the screenshot of "MECT (no-convulsive electroconvulsive therapy-reporter's note) can erase memories" has been circulating on the Internet. Many young people regard this as a trend and want to selectively forget some painful experiences through MECT. .

Some people even say that they don’t understand the principle of MECT and are not sick, but "if I can forget him, I’m willing to do it"...

  In fact, MECT is not used to forget who or what, but to treat patients with severe depression, especially depression patients with psychotic symptoms and suicidal tendencies.

It is currently impossible to accurately predict which aspects of MECT affect cognitive function

  Huang Wensheng, director of the non-convulsive treatment room of Peking University Sixth Hospital, told China Youth Daily·China Youth Daily that MECT stimulates the brain through a short and appropriate amount of pulsed current, which triggers extensive discharges in the cerebral cortex, thereby causing a series of neurophysiological and biochemical reactions. The patient's clinical symptoms will be relieved with treatment.

Before starting the electrical stimulation treatment, administer anesthetics and muscle relaxants intravenously so that the patient can complete the treatment without obvious convulsions.

During the treatment, the patient has no painful experience and is more humane.

"The true principle of MECT is still not very clear. It is mostly inductive description at the speculative level. You can visually understand the treatment process as'computer restart'."

  Huang Wensheng introduced that MECT is widely used in psychiatric clinics. It will be the first choice for severe depression, especially depression patients with psychotic symptoms or suicidal tendencies. It is effective in improving thought inhibition, emotion inhibition, behavior inhibition, etc. Significantly faster than drugs.

Under normal circumstances, treatment for 3 to 4 times, most patients can improve the core symptoms of depression and eliminate the idea of ​​suicide.

Secondly, the treatment effect is better for patients with extreme excitement, restlessness, disobedience, stupor, refusal to eat, etc.

  Huang Wensheng told reporters that the patient may experience memory loss after 4 to 5 treatments, but there is no evidence or case that it can "erasing bad memories and leaving good ones."

  After treatment, patients may forget what happened during the treatment period, and have varying degrees of understanding and judgment decline.

"Our colleagues agree that this is a temporary damage to the cognitive function of the brain by electrical stimulation, which is reversible and recoverable. Most patients recover within one to two months. Many patients have memory during treatment. Problems, but it will not have a continuous impact on later learning, memory and other functions."

  Huang Wensheng said that although MECT is relatively safe and effective, the number of deaths due to treatment is very small, about one in 50,000 to 80,000.

He reminded everyone to rationally realize that the human brain is very complicated. MECT, like other drug treatments, has side effects of varying degrees and cannot be avoided.

At present, it is impossible to accurately predict which aspects of MECT affect cognitive function. The situation of each person is different, and the degree of impact is also different.

  Huang Wensheng said that, in addition, we must also consider the impact of mental illness on cognitive function. For example, after some depression patients recover from mood, their memory recovery is poor for a long time, and some patients cannot return to the pre-ill level. These are the effects of diseases on cognitive function.

Some patients are also accompanied by anxiety and will attribute these memory loss to the side effects of treatment.

  "MECT currently has no absolute contraindications. Patients with pheochromocytoma, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease within 3 months, and severe physical diseases such as abdominal aortic aneurysm should be carefully considered. Whether and how to treat such key patients , We must weigh the pros and cons. For example, if the patient has a strong concept of suicide, if he does not do MECT, he will commit suicide at all times. The risk is high. The benefits of treatment for such patients outweigh the risks. At this time, we will consider MECT for patients. "Huang Wensheng introduced that patients who are intolerant of drugs and are not suitable for drug treatment, as well as the elderly, pregnant women, and women who are preparing for pregnancy, can choose MECT when necessary and after full evaluation.

Patients with various types of intractable mental illnesses with ineffective drug treatment can also try this method.

Distinguish between depressed mood and depression

  Some people have self-tested depression online and want to do MECT.

In this regard, Huang Wensheng said that whether he is diagnosed with depression needs to be evaluated by a professional doctor.

"When in a bad mood, many young people take self-tests for depression, and some patients who go to the outpatient clinic have also taken self-tests, but not all of them are diagnosed with depression after seeing the doctor. Most of the self-test questions on the Internet are self-evaluation. The table is easy to operate, but the subjectivity is relatively strong, and the tester may have some problems with the judgment and understanding of the question."

  Huang Wensheng introduced that strictly speaking, the manifestations of depression episodes are divided into core symptoms, psychological symptoms and physical symptoms.

The core symptoms include depression, feeling hopeless, helpless, and useless; lack of interest, no interest in anything, good or bad; loss of pleasure, inability to get pleasure from life.

The core symptom is the key symptom of depression. It must meet the diagnostic criteria to meet at least two of them and last for more than two weeks.

There are also strict standards for diagnosing depressive episodes. Doctors must conduct systematic psychological evaluation, brain function imaging, and EEG examinations on patients, fully understand the patient’s medical history, conduct effective mental examinations, and make comprehensive judgments.

"Therefore, through self-test, it is not comprehensive to feel that you have reached moderate or severe depression. You can try self-test when your mood fluctuates. It should be a free mental examination, but if you continue to be in a bad mood and not in a state Good, see a doctor in time."

  Huang Wensheng reminds everyone to distinguish between depression and depression.

"When you encounter bad things, you have normal emotional fluctuations in a short period of time, and you can adjust it yourself. The patient himself can often distinguish the pessimistic experience of depression from the usual loss and sadness. In daily life, if Family members who experience serious or long-term loss, bad mood, lack of energy, decreased interest, self-blame and low self-esteem, early awakening, inattention, memory loss, etc., are recommended to go to a professional outpatient clinic of a regular hospital."

These techniques are effective for decompression

  What to do if there is depression in daily life?

Huang Wensheng summarized a few decompression tips. When you feel difficult and stressed, you can try the following methods:

  1. Change the angle of view.

Everyone will face different levels and different aspects of pressure. Some people can adapt to the same pressure and turn the pressure into motivation. Some people feel very tortured.

90% of the emotional state in your life is determined by how you react to what is happening. Turn your head a little bit, and it will turn around.

  Relieve pressure properly.

When stress is too high, vent it, such as hitting, talking, and crying to trusted family and friends.

  2. Exercise.

Exercise will prompt the brain to release beneficial biochemical substances such as enkephalins.

Do not restrict the form, move anytime and anywhere, often go outdoors, especially in open, sunny places to do some aerobic exercise to relieve stress.

  Three, take a deep breath.

Deep breathing can increase blood oxygen saturation and reduce emotional tension.

  Fourth, build good interpersonal relationships.

Maintain a sunny mind in the interaction, be calm and harmonious with family, friends, and colleagues, and build a strong internal external support system.

  5. Combination of work and rest.

Reasonably arrange life and work time, you can divide things in life into four quadrants, the first quadrant is urgent and important, the second quadrant is not urgent but important, the third quadrant is given priority to urgent but not important, and the non-urgent but not important is the third quadrant. What is necessary is the fourth quadrant, to do it in a reasonable and orderly manner, to work happily and live happily.

  China Youth Daily·China Youth Daily reporter Zhang Manyu Source: China Youth Daily