- psychotic symptoms and hallucinations
- thoughts of hurting one's self or others
- severe malnutrition and neglecting self-care
ECT can also be used for pregnant women with schizophrenia, when antipsychotic medications are not an option. Older people may be strongly affected by side effects of antipsychotic medications and ECT may be a better option for them. Some people prefer ECT over other treatments for their illness. Before receiving ECT, people must have a medical and psychiatric exam. The doctor will want to make sure that the person is in good physical health to reduce the risk of side effects.