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Electro-convulsive therapy (ECT)

ECT (electro-convulsive therapy) is a treatment for certain psychological disorders in which our highly-trained professionals utilize electrical current to produce a closely supervised, medically induced seizure. ECT has been shown to be effective in treating:

  • Major depression
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Schizo-affective disorder

Why Choose ECT at Avera Behavioral Health Center?

  • Experience and Dedication: Avera Behavioral Health Center offers patients relief from psychological disorders using ECT, and features one of the few suites in the region devoted solely to this kind of treatment.
  • Convenience and Personalized Attention: Avera Behavioral Health Center is the only facility in the region to provide inpatient and outpatient ECT services. Our approach gives you the special attention you need to feel well again, along with the flexibility your busy life demands. Whatever your lifestyle, we can set up a program that's right for you.
  • ECT is Quick, Safe and Effective: ECT used as a first-line treatment, or coupled with medication, often produces positive outcomes more quickly than medications alone. Patients who receive ECT as a first-line treatment generally experience 80-90% improvement in functioning and mood. Additionally, ECT can be safer than medicines (some people's bodies, such as the elderly and those with certain other health issues, cannot process medications).

What To Expect When You Choose ECT at Avera Behavioral Health Center

  • Safety: During your ECT sessions, we provide sedation for your comfort and relaxation. You will be asleep during the procedure, and under constant supervision by our experienced medical professionals. An anesthesiologist, along with a nurse anesthetist who is cross-trained in advanced cardiac support, monitors your condition throughout your treatment.
  • Dignity, Comfort and Privacy: We understand that the decision to seek behavioral health treatment of any kind can be a difficult one to make. That's why Avera Behavioral Health Center strives to create an environment of comfort, privacy and confidence. You will prepare for your ECT treatment in our private changing area. And, while you're resting through your treatment, your family can relaxing in our inviting waiting area, complete with free Starbucks coffee. After your treatment, specialized nurses supervise your recovery and provide whatever you need (like a warm blanket) to make a comfortable transition back into your day.
  • Convenience: The Avera Behavioral Health Center prides itself on providing outstanding, patient-and family-centered care. We can work around your schedule to get you the care you need, when you need it. Generally, each ECT session is a two-hour process, depending upon recovery time. For acute treatments, we recommend six sessions, minimum. Many of our patients complete three to four sessions as inpatients, and the rest as outpatients because they experience fast, positive results. Most ECT patients also undergo "maintenance sessions," follow-up visits available whenever you need them, which allow you to continue feeling well without interrupting your life and activities.

Learn More and Referrals

Candidates for ECT must be medically cleared and referred by their psychiatrist. Speak with him/her about whether a referral to Avera Behavioral Health Center is right for you. You can also learn more about our services by calling 605-322-5950.

This article explains about the electro-convulsive therapy method of treatment for depression