I have drug resistant depression, well Bipolar. I have been treated for 30 years. I also have other illnesses with constant pain such as MS. I found a good Psychiatrist who tries different things. I also have a therapist who I talk to and teaches me self hypnosis.
My Doctors are looking at ECT. I am not sure how I feel about it yet. I may not be able to have it anyway because of my headaches.
I personally am trying to do the best I can. I told a group of Medical Students during my last exam "I have lots of conditions which make you miserable but none which will kill me".
Hang in there. There is always hope,
The term "treatment resistant depression" does not accurately describe the situation.
While many of us, including me, have been so classified it defies my response to a number of drugs over the years and particularly the period I have been in now for nearly a year. That is on meds and feeling OK. Not delirious but calm, relaxed most of the time and content with my situation.
It's not ideal but I am so releived to be out of the horror of what I used to experience.
How did I get up here? Luck, finding a great pdoc, compliance with doc's instructions and changing my life to exclude things I'd done most of my life. Alcohol, cigarettes, gambling. All gone And gone as soon as I decided to stop them. They were done separately as I was ready but now I miss none of them.
Nobody is beyond help despite what a particular doc may tell you. My own doc, in our first appointment, said I only had one option, ECT. After initially agreeind in desperation my partner researched it and I changed my mind, such as it was at that time.
I have been on meds since, nearly a decade and had my best results from a combinationof Effexor and lithium. I am now officially BP2 although that is only about 3 years ago, the diagnosis.
You say it runs in your family. Many say that as there is a theory that if a number in one family have it then it "runs in the family".
More likely is thet you have lived with depressed parents or people whose behaviour was picked up by you as a very young child. Learned depression. And yes, it could be genetic, there is a theory that says about 1/3rd of us have it from birth.
Your mention of chronic back pain though tells me that is more than likely the real cause of your depression. Chronic pain often creates depression as it is so hard to bear. Even with pain relief you still feel it and it just wears you down and changes your life. So depression slips in.
I mentiond Effexor because it is an anti D whcih deals with both depression and anxiety and I know it works for many. Not everyone, but it seems to be the most talked about med which indicates it must also be the most prescribed drug, particularly as it is not new and doesn't have the media hype to promote. Docs fall back on it after trying all the latest ones usually.
I too have chronic pain and it just niggles away all day despite meds for that. It's gradually getting worse but, like many back problems, docs just can't find the answer to why. I gave up and took the pain relief I was so sick of tests and docs looking blankly at me saying "Nothing I could find". They managed to find their billing process though, real quick.