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What to do with the voices?

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Obviously if someone is unfortunate enough to suffer a mental illness, like for example schizophrenia, there is no sure-fire way to cure this illness.

All the treatments that are used, and have been used in the past to treat serious mental illnesses have their good and bad sides.

So here's my question. If you were the head of the Health Service (don't know the official classy name for it but nevermind) and you made all the decisions about how to treat patients, what would you do. I'm talking here about the more serious mental health problems like severe schizophrenia.

Obviously as technology progressed and drugs were introduced such as valium and librium (minor tranquilisers), along with majors such as largactyl and hariperidol, this changed the way things were done, but is it right to used them? I mean, it covers up the problem and temporarily makes things fine, but at the end of the day it's not achieving anything, and doesn't do anything about the root cause, just covers it up. So using chemothreapy, a severe schizophrenic would have to stay on drugs for the rest of their lifes or otherwise just deteriorate.

I think the only other possible 'cures' are ECT (electro-convulsive therapy) which is a jolt of electricity through the brain which causes a seizure. Now obviously seizures are very undesirable and I think just about anybody would be scared before going into the theater. Apparently it 'cures' 75% of people, but 80% of those have a relapse within a year. Scarily, this is the Health whatever bloke's therapy of choice for the mentally ill in my county of Northamptonshire. :crazyeyes

As well as that is psychosurgery (frontal lobotomys) which is basically drilling two holes into the head near/on the temples and (old fashioned) just chopping away blindly at the brain, and (modern) strategically placing radioactive pellets in the brain to burn away brain tissue. I think it's very very rare nowadays.

But yeah, what would you do if you had a case of a severe schizophrenic come to you? If you chose designer drugs like the vast majority of doctors nowadays would you not have second thoughts about turning the person into a 'zombie' with tranquilisers? I mean, for them not to suffer the schizophrenia again, they would need to be constantly under the influence just about.

Well done if you read all that.

I didn't think you would. :p

Someone better reply now, that took me fo0king ages. :)

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I think if the medication works then keep using it. Its the same as astmatics, Diabetics etc, we treat them but they aren't cured. People can stay on medication all their lives depending on whats wrong with them, so if someone has a sever case of schizophrenia (sp) and medication calms them and works on them then carry on with the treatment.
    Obviously if the medication does not work to the full potential then try alternative methods.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Re: What to do with the voices?
    Originally posted by z0ma


    along with majors such as largactyl

    i don't know the answers. lobotomy is a very severe and uncertain science.
    as for largagtyl, it was and probably still is used throughout the prison system on the kinds of prisoners that were to scary for convict and screw alike. it was known as the liquid cosh. very heavy drug.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by BeckyBoo
    I think if the medication works then keep using it.

    But that's the point. I see your point about the astmatics and diabetics, but there medication has a specific purpose. Astmatics have their inhalers that they use when they have an attack to hopefully restore normal breathing. It's specifically made for this purpose and that purpose alone.

    The thing is, with schizophrenics and those with severe mental disorders, they don't give them anything specific. They give them tranquilisers, to get them out of the way, to make the job easier for the nurses. They'll be put into mental homes, dosed up on the nasty drugs and left.

    They turn into bland, no personality people. You're absolutely correct some people need medication all their lives, but with these it's different. The medication they are fed doesn't do fuck all to the problem, it just makes it dormant.
    Originally posted by morrocan roll
    lobotomy is a very severe and uncertain science.
    as for largagtyl, it was and probably still is used throughout the prison system on the kinds of prisoners that were to scary for convict and screw alike. it was known as the liquid cosh. very heavy drug.

    Exactly. And to think, the creator of the lobotomy got the Nobel prize for it. :rolleyes:

    This is what I mean, with people with serious illnesses, they may be unfortunate and need medication for the rest of their lives. But with this medication, they can function normally. If a severe schizophrenic is taken in to an institute, it is more that likely he will be prescribed largactyl or hariperidol, and will just turn into a lifeless 'vegetable' for want of a better word.
    Originally posted by morrocan roll
    i don't know the answers.

    That's what I mean. There are no answers. All the methods of 'treating' it are either barbaric or stupid in the sense they do nothing except 'hide' the person away in the depths of an institution, constantly dosed up.

    I don't suppose there is much you can do to a severly mentally ill person to make them better, all methods have very severe downsides. Hmph. I don't really know where I'm going with this know.

    Any more input?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    If there is no cure then for the safety of these people with severe schizophrenia then its in their own interest and other peoples interest to sedate them or give them something to make them calm.
    The role of a carer is to make people as comfortable as possible so if I was making the decision then id go with sedation, that way they come to no harm.
    Its a vicious circle because without medication then people are at risk from what they may do and until they find a miracle cure then it most probably will stay that way.
    I have not worked in this type of job before, I dont know much about the way they work but id say the main thing has to be to make sure they cant harm themselves.
    Ah im rambling about something I dont know much about, so i will leave it to people who may know more about it than me :)
    Tis a good way to get out of a topic that I know nowt about lol
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    they dont just sedate people who are dangerous though, they sedate them just for hearing voices or to make it easier. Its just a way of writing people off. Nobody can live anything like a normal life or even learn to cope with their problems when theyre doped up to the eyeballs on depixol or largactyl. I dont have any solutions, but nor do the mental health `experts` Mental health is not an exact science, they give people medication on a trial and error basis. As for ECT they dont even know why it works, they just know it does (for some patients, but I dont think its anywhere near 75%) Ive known 3 people whove had it, and its not cured any of them.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by rainbow brite
    As for ECT they dont even know why it works, they just know it does (for some patients, but I dont think its anywhere near 75%) Ive known 3 people whove had it, and its not cured any of them.

    Sorry I was a bit over dramatic I think.

    I think it was that 75% showed a noted increase in mental health.

    The 3 people you know, did they talk about the experience? I can't imagine it being pleasant, I've seen clips of people having the treatment and it really doesn't look nice at all.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    my stepdads mother did talk about it a little bit, but mainly to say she didnt really have any choice in it, and although there was a sort of improvement after, it was mainly because it zaps all your memories,. when i say that it didnt cure them, I mean in the long term it didnt do anything, the schizophrenia/mental health problems all came back again.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by rainbow brite
    my stepdads mother did talk about it a little bit, but mainly to say she didnt really have any choice in it, and although there was a sort of improvement after, it was mainly because it zaps all your memories,. when i say that it didnt cure them, I mean in the long term it didnt do anything, the schizophrenia/mental health problems all came back again.

    Yeah apparently 80% or more suffer a relapse within a year. The other 20%, it may just be a longer relapse period or they may actually be one of the lucky ones.

    So in theory for ECT to work properly, it'd need to be done once a year, every year. Inducing seizures on someone over and over again cannot do them any good at all.

    Hmm, it's a tough one, if I ever had to face it, I don't know what I'd go for. Do you even get a decision in it? :rolleyes:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I would like to reply more fully, but have very little time at the moment

    a couple of thoughts

    new drugs such as respiridone depot injections mean that people with schizophrenia and other mental illness are getting better treatment

    attempting to treat people is better that locking people up in institutions


    work beckons
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Not so hot on Mental Health issues as I deal mainly with surgical issues, but I think that similar ethical considerations apply.

    Treatment should be based on what is best for the patient.

    If ECT is proven to show an improvement, and if the doctor agrees that the treatment would be best for the patient. If the patient agrees (which is the most important part) then this is the treatment that should be offered.

    If drugs are preferred, then that is the option which should be persued.

    I understand that ECT isn't always effective and that relapses are possible. But the same rules applies to many treatments.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    http://www.janssen-cilag.co.uk/1in100/index.asp

    this is a useful site about medication

    MoK is right: many treatments aren't as effective as we would like them to be

    the thing with ECT and consent is that often due to the nature of mental illness the patient does not have the capacity to give consent, and this then falls to a relative.

    I think ECT should only be used (and in my Trust is) as a last resort.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Re: What to do with the voices?
    Originally posted by z0ma
    I think the only other possible 'cures' are ECT (electro-convulsive therapy) which is a jolt of electricity through the brain which causes a seizure. Now obviously seizures are very undesirable and I think just about anybody would be scared before going into the theater. Apparently it 'cures' 75% of people, but 80% of those have a relapse within a year. Scarily, this is the Health whatever bloke's therapy of choice for the mentally ill in my county of Northamptonshire. :crazyeyes

    Actually ECT is used to combat depression, not schizophrenia. However if we go back a few decades they'd give you any old crap to shut you up if you were banged in a psych.

    There are actually many different levels of Schizophrenia and some can be controlled with drugs, others come in waves so a person can function 'normally' for a while and then get hit by it. Some people completely lose touch with reality... some even could be a danger to themselves or others and that's when sectioning is needed.
    The thing is, with schizophrenics and those with severe mental disorders, they don't give them anything specific. They give them tranquilisers, to get them out of the way, to make the job easier for the nurses. They'll be put into mental homes, dosed up on the nasty drugs and left.

    They turn into bland, no personality people. You're absolutely correct some people need medication all their lives, but with these it's different. The medication they are fed doesn't do fuck all to the problem, it just makes it dormant.

    Aye, people with mental illness differ from the accepted social norm, which is why, in my opinion why they give them drugs. Also, it's cheaper and more effective and at least it keeps them out of the way of people. Wouldn't want the health services to look bad.

    I myself have been on a few types of medication and without another type of therapy (e.g. cognitive therapy... councilling and so on) it does bugger all in the long run. It tackles the effect and not the cause. I'm no expert on schizophrenia but I know that with alot of mental illnesses there are triggers that send people in to a downwards spiral.


    Its just a way of writing people off.

    Here here!

    The crap I was put on for depression made me aggressive at first (and I'm not an aggressive person) after which it took away all feeling. Literally took it all away and from frustration of not feeling it just made me... I don't know, it's this bizarre sense of dispair... but I couldn't be arsed being destructive... in fact I lost my ability to write and laugh.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Just to throw in some factsheets that might make some of the issues raised here clearer.

    Mind factsheer on Schizophrenia (including details of treatments and causes)

    Understanding Schizophrenia

    and to go further the link page to all the understanding factsheets that Mind produce.

    Mind Understanding Series

    Have a look.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Re: Re: What to do with the voices?
    Originally posted by MoonRat
    Actually ECT is used to combat depression, not schizophrenia.

    I'm no expert on ECT but I know in the past it was used to treat schizophrenia. Obviously it's nowhere near as common as it was in the past due to cheap drugs being mass produced, but when it was in its' prime it was used for a variety of mental disorders because nobody was actually eniterly sure how or why it worked, it just..did.

    I remember watching a film clip of a schizophrenic woman before treatment, where she would just babble nonsense constantly with no grasp of reality, showed her having the treatment, and showed her after too. She wasn't 100% but she was a hell of a lot better, she had a firm grasp on reality. Shame it's very likely she'll have relapsed. :rolleyes:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    insanity ...sounds a scary place.
    how we all interpret insanity and then deal with it is ...quite scary as well.
    the human mind is still a relatively unknown.

    i've spent my entire life challenging my sanity, my mental health ...
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