We are the combination of four hospitals: the General Hospital, the Children’s Hospital, the Women’s Hospital and the Traumatology, Rehabilitation and Burns Hospital. We are part of the Vall d’Hebron Barcelona Hospital Campus: a world-leading health park where healthcare plays a crucial role.
Below we will list the departments and units that form part of Vall d’Hebron Hospital and the main diseases that we treat. We will also make recommendations based on advice backed up by scientific evidence that has been shown to be effective in guaranteeing well-being and quality of life.
We will guide you from your first visit to the centre, allowing you to find all the departments and make the most of our facilities. Whatever the reason for your visit, we will explain how to get about the hospital.
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) consists of producing mild convulsive activity by administering a brief and controlled electric stimulus with variable frequency through electrodes that are placed on the surface of the brain. This convulsive activity produces biochemical changes in the brain that help to improve symptoms or cause them to go into remission.
ECT is a safe and effective medical treatment that is indicated above all in depressive disorders: Severe depression with psychotic symptoms or at high risk of suicide and serious physical deterioration. It is also indicated in certain psychotic disorders, acute mania and severe treatment-resistant mental health issues. ECT is also indicated in non-psychiatric pathologies within neurology, such as; refractory epilepsy, Parkinson's disease, neuroleptic malignant syndrome and late-onset dyskinesia.
Its application has evolved significantly. It is a pain-free technique that is performed under brief anaesthesia with muscle relaxation and artificial ventilation. Electric stimulation is induced with computer-assisted equipment that monitors the effect of a mild convulsion induced using brief-pulse waves on the brain’s electrical activity. This allows the minimum intensity of electrical stimulation to be administered, decreasing cognitive side effects and drastically reducing the complications associated with treatment. Nowadays, the technique is considered to have no contraindications whatsoever.
Some patients with psychiatric disorders that do not respond to conventional treatment have not, however, been treated with ECT despite its high level of safety and therapeutic predictability. This therapeutic inhibition could be due to the stigma based on outdated beliefs about the treatment.
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