Combined use of ECT and psychotropic drugs
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Katedra i Klinika Psychiatrii i Psychoterapii ŚUM w Katowicach
Wojciech Merk   

Katedra i Klinika Psychiatrii i Psychoterapii Śląskiego Uniwersytetu Medycznego w Katowicach, ul. Ziołowa 45/47, SPSK Nr 7 SUM GCM im. prof. Leszka Gieca, 40-635 Katowice, Polska
Submission date: 2014-06-20
Final revision date: 2015-01-19
Acceptance date: 2015-01-24
Publication date: 2015-12-31
Psychiatr Pol 2015;49(6):1241–1253
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT),despite a significant psychopharmacological development and introduction of modern drugs in recent years, is still an important, biological treatment of proven, high clinical efficacy. In the management algorithms it is still considered as a method of choice in treatment of drug-resistant patients. No wider use of ECTmay in part result from fears of potential interactions with pharmacotherapy, or need to interrupt the current treatment. The issue of potential impact of pharmacotherapy on many procedure parameters, including mostly seizure threshold and therefore indirectly clinical effect, is still up-to-date. Systematic studies have revised the existing theories about restrictions in the administration of medications during ECT treatment. Nowadays more often not only the safety of such procedure, but also possibility of synergistic therapeutic effect of ECT and psychopharmacology is highlighted. The authors present previous reports on combined use of pharmacotherapy and ECT, safety or potential risks associated with this treatment and proposals of scientific bodies in this regard. Interpretative limitations of conducted research, including especially case reports or observations of small groups, which requires further studies involving more numerous patient populations is noteworthy.