Psychosurgery and electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). What is the difference between them? What is the area of their employment? What wins: complications or testimonies? What are the main testimonies for these procedures nowadays? Is it steel worth doing and undergo them? It is necessary to answer these questions. A great number of books and manuals is devoted to these ways of treatment in psychiatry and a great number of works is devoted to the ethical aspect of these manipulations.
Psychosurgery appeared in the Middle Ages. The first famous psychosurgeon was Gottlieb Burkhardt. In 1935 Egash Monish carried out the first lobotomy – one of the type of psychosurgical operations and even was awarded with Nobel prize for it. In 1936 American psychiatrist Walter Freeman carried out his first lobotomy with electroconvulsive treatment as anesthesia. It was the beginning of the ECT epoch. Since then ECT was widely employed for the treatment of different psychiatric disorders, something about one million people in the world undergo ECT every year.
Psychosurgical manipulations, such as lobotomy or cyngulotomy etc., implies rough mechanical destruction of the brain tissue with the help of different surgical and pseudosurgical instruments. ECT in its turn means destruction of the several centers of the drain with the help of electric current, which changes chemical processes in the brain, increases the level of oxygen consumption by the brain tissue and causes electric scald of the brain. All these changes are irreversible ones. ECT is carried out under general anesthesia including muscle relaxants in order to prevent fractures of the vertebral bodies. Extended explanation of ETC methods, testimonies and contradictions is given in numerous artiles (Peterchev etc. 160-170; Lisanby 139-143).
In general, there is no difference between ECT and psychosurgery, because of the common result – death of the neurons. Only mechanism is different. ECT and psychosurgery are obviously ineffective and undoubtedly dangerous. It is necessary to remember that neurons are unable to restore. It is impossible to renew neural cells. ECT causes impairment of the brain which is revealed as serious and irreversible amnesia, fainting fit, loss of orientation on time and place. The next point is that not only neurons are destroyed but the brain tissue as well, including all the cells of microglia which provide a great deal of functions, blood capillaries are destroyed also, but the mechanism of their impairment is different: in the case of psychosurgical manipulations – it will be mechanical impairment – hemorrhage area around; in the case of ECT the capillary wall permeability increases and all the toxins from blood penetrate into the brain tissue, and the center of necrosis appears. Both of these two types of treatment are too invalid ones. Both of them lead to utter destruction of personality. Let’s recall “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” which shows real picture of destruction. We may also recall Ernst Hemingway with his suicide after ECT, etc. Shock causes condition of euphoria which erases from the memory only memories of depression but doesn’t hit the real target.
In spite of the wide spreading of depression disorders in population (more than 150 million patients throughout the world) (World Health Organisation 160), the problem of depression in general is out of these ways of treatment. Depression as well as aggression is some kind of psychological powerful drug, which try to cattch as many personalities as possible. It is very “comfortable” to be in depression, to pity yourself, to enjoy uselessness of your own and revel in indifference of the world to your person. I t is simply necessary to reveal the origin of the depression and let it to be recognized by yourself.
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While discussing "Applying Psychology in the 21st Century Beating the Odds: Preventing Psychological Disorders Before They Start" (Robert S. Feldman 512) we can say that all of us are from the childhood and all of us are conditioned by external circumstances: by our parents, teachers, so-called friends etc. Children of depressed parents are at increased risk of developing depression themselves, because they are conditioned by them, and they don't know other way of living. That is, it is necessary to behave yourself consciously in order not to treat with ECT your own children and in order to avoid depression. It is also necessary to have a private talk with children in order to reveal depression symptoms and to prevent suicide outcome. Psychologists have to examine psychological status of the risk children family. According to the genetic screening for these at risk children, it is worth mentioning that depression is a kind of social disease, it mainly depends on feeling of aloofness, loneliness of children in this modern world. The aim of psychologists in these conditions is to teach children to reveal the cause of their depression, to perceive their psychological status and to cope with it without any pseudo adaptogens such as alcohol and drugs in order to save their personalities to notice all the bright sides of the world, to realize their existence and their absolutely necessity for life in general. The problem of depression is a real problem of the present time which we have to solve nowadays.