Eur J Pain. 2004 Aug;8(4):371-6. Huuhka MJ, Haanpaa ML, Leinonen EV. Department of Psychogeriatrics, Tampere University Hospital, Pitkaniemi Fin-33380, Finland.
The effect of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) on depression and other symptoms of fibromyalgia was studied in a prospective 3-month trial in 13 patients with fibromyalgia and concomitant depression. All the patients met the DSM-IV diagnostic criteria for Major Depressive Disorder and fulfilled the American College of Rheumatology diagnostic criteria for fibromyalgia. The Montgomery and Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) and the clinical global impression scale (CGI) were used to assess the severity of depression and the clinical change of the patients. The fibromyalgia impact questionnaire (FIQ) was used to evaluate the severity of the fibromyalgia symptoms. The intensity of pain was evaluated using a 6-point scale (0=no pain, 5=very severe pain), and tender point palpation. All assessments were performed at baseline and at follow-up visits, which took place one week, one month and three months after ECT.
There was a significant improvement in depression after ECT according to MADRS. Using CGI, six patients were much or very much improved, while four patients were minimally improved and three patients had no change. There was significant improvement in four out of ten FIQ item scores, "feel good", "fatigue", "anxiety" and "depression". No significant change was found in the FIQ item scores "physical function", "pain", "stiffness" and "morning tiredness" or number of tender points and self-reported pain. We conclude that ECT is a safe and effective treatment for depression in fibromyalgia patients, but has no effect on the pain or other physical symptoms of these patients. PMID: 15207518 [PubMed – in process]