ETC (electro-shock) Treatments

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ETC (electro-shock) Treatments

Post  freak032173 on Sun Jul 01, 2012 9:29 am

I've recently had it suggested to me (by a friend of a friend) that ETC treatments may help my headaches. I have friends who have had them for psychiatric reasons & have lost parts of their memories. (1 has short term memory issues for a few months afterward & the other lost part of her kid's childhoods permanently.)

I was just wondering if anyone else has tried this for their M's and what the outcome was? Any other thoughts would be appreciated also.

Thanks!! "freak"
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Re: ETC (electro-shock) Treatments

Post  tortoisegirl on Sun Jul 01, 2012 1:23 pm

That hasn't been suggested to me, but if it was, I wouldn't pursue it...just seems too risky. I'd never do a treatment just because someone says it might help. I'd want multiple doctor opinions and study data to back it up. So would the goal of this be to reset the brain somehow to stop the migraine cycle? Best wishes.

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Multiple opinions

Post  freak032173 on Sun Jul 01, 2012 1:25 pm

In order for me to do them AND my insurance to pay for it, multiple doctors would have to be involved. PLUS, this would have to be an ABSOLUTE last resort for me, as I don't relish any form of memory loss.

I just put this out there to see if anyone had tried it or even researched it as an option.

"freak"
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Re: ETC (electro-shock) Treatments

Post  sailingmuffin on Sun Jul 01, 2012 4:17 pm

Hi,

I haven't heard of Electroshock therapy for migraines.

However, I do have an occipital nerve stimulator implanted. This device is kind of like a pacemaker, but for the occipital nerves in the back of the head. It works by sending a "false" electrical signal to the nerve to block the pain signal. (It is based on the same technology used in spinal cord stimulators to treat chronic pain.) The wires are implanted under the skin, right above the occipital nerve in the head. Mine connect in my shoulder and run to the battery in my hip. this is the same technology used for spinal cord stimulators to treat chronic pain. If nerve blocks helped, this might be worth looking into. I did have a 10 day trial of a temporary device before the permanent was implanted.

The stimulator has been a life-saver for me. After it was first implanted, I experienced a period of remission that lasted for eight months. The headaches went from daily to 2-3 times a week and maybe once a month, I would need a course of steroids or an injection. This was a vast improvement from the chronic intractable migraines. Unfotunately, I broke a lead after I had it in for eight months and when I got the lead repaired, I didn't experience remission. However, the stimulator keeps the pain level down and also allows the medications to work. (Before the stimulator, nothing short of heavy duty narcotics and steroids helped. Now, an IV of Depakan helps and I also respond to pain medication better.)

I will tell you this though- there are not a whole lot of doctors who do this procedure. Mine was put in at Jefferson University in Philadelphoa in 2004. I went up to see Dr. S at their headache center and, after reading my history, he said, "Drugs don't seem to be the best treatment for you. However, I think you might be a good candidate for this new device." I didn't even have to think about it, just said, "ok, when do I meet the surgeon?"

At the time of my surgery, the device was between Phase II and Phase II clinical trials. I opted out of the study. It has been revised three times since implantation- when I broke a lead in 2005, when the extension broke in 2007 and it was completely replaced in 2010 due to the fact that I had broken both wires when fainting and the battery needed to be changed as well. With the exception of the 2005 revision, the same neurosurgeon (who basically pioneered the device) did all revisions. It was nearly impossible to get insurance to cover it. The original surgeon moved to Denver in 2005-but he is excellent.

I think it might be worth checking out as this has been successful for some migraine patients and deals with similar, though less risky technology than the ECT.

I hope this infor helpps.

Pain free days,
sailingm

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Re: ETC (electro-shock) Treatments

Post  Migrainegirl on Wed Jul 04, 2012 8:50 pm

I have never heard of electroshock therapy for migraine and would run very fast the other direction if you hear anyone suggest it. That is a very severe therapy that is only used for certain brain disorders and even then only in the very worst circumstances. No way!
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