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Is electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) a viable treatment for bipolar depression?

ANSWER

Guidelines from the American Psychiatric Association suggest that ECT is an appropriate and sometimes preferred treatment for depressed bipolar patients who have psychotic symptoms or a very high risk for suicidal behavior. In addition, ECT may benefit women who are pregnant and suffer with severe bipolar depression or mania.

From: Treating Bipolar Depression WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

National Institute of Mental Health: Systematic Treatment Enhancement Program for Bipolar Disorder (STEP-BD).

American Psychiatric Association: "2002 Practice Guidelines."

Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg on October 13, 2017

SOURCES:

National Institute of Mental Health: Systematic Treatment Enhancement Program for Bipolar Disorder (STEP-BD).

American Psychiatric Association: "2002 Practice Guidelines."

Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg on October 13, 2017

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Can psychotherapy help with bipolar depression?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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