Two sisters, Sara and Amanda Eldritch who suffered from Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder commonly known as OCD were reported dead in what the police called ‘double suicide’. The twin sisters, 33, were reported dead on Friday, March 30 in a car near Canon City’s Gorge Bridge, Colorado.
OCD is a chronic or an anxiety disorder in which the sufferer has uncontrollable reoccurring thoughts (obsession) or behaviors (compulsions) and then tries to engage in them repetitively. This illness makes the sufferer perform unusual acts like consuming excess amount of time, washing hands hundreds of times a day.
Just three years ago, they gained fame in the state of Colorado as they were the first patients to undergo deep brain stimulation, a surgical therapy given to a patient of Parkinson’s disease only when OCD treatments have failed. These inseparable sisters recounted the procedure of this surgical therapy on the syndicated talk show known as The Doctors.
Sadly, the story of these twin sisters came to a tragic end as they were reported dead by the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office. In their report to the Canon’s City Daily Record, the Fremont County Sheriff’s Officials said they found the car at Royal Gorge Bridge and Park in Canon City.
The wounds were revealed to be those of a gunshot, though it is not certain if it was a double suicide or murder suicide. According to the spokeswoman to Fremont County Sheriff, Sgt. Megan Richard, it appeared to be an isolated incident since there was no trace of threat to the public.
Their Story Prior to Their Death
It was extremely difficult for them when they were toddlers to put on their pairs of socks and shoes within a twinkle of an eye. During the 2017 interview on The Doctors, the twin sisters said that they began cleanliness rituals when they were in middle school, and in their twenties they would spend 10 hours taking showers.
As if that wasn’t enough, they would use an entire bar soap during each shower. As a result, they began losing friends.
Sarah said: “When it takes you all day to take a shower, you are never going to meet them somewhere. They just stopped calling us”.
In the case of these both, it seemed as if nature was completely cruel. Her sister, Amanda said: “We used hydrogen peroxide and alcohol. There was one point we were using so much hydrogen peroxide on our faces, it turned our eyebrows orange.”
The twins could not hold a job, travel, meet with friends, touch other people- including their mother and each other. What an incapacitating condition they found themselves!
As mentioned earlier, a groundbreaking surgery was undergone by Sarah and Amanda in spring 2015 that drew the attention of the nation- being the first patients to undergo deep brain stimulation in Colorado.
When the procedure began, doctors implanted electrode wires under the skin of each of their heads, necks, and shoulders. The wires were connected to a neurostimulator, which is also called a battery pack.
Their doctor, Dr. David Vansickle during an interview with The Doctors said: “The deep brain stimulates electrodes, they inhibit an area of the brain called the nucleus accumbens, and by inhibiting that area of the brain the anxiety doesn’t build to the level it was building before. That allows them to deal with these obsessions and compulsions more normally”
Speaking to The Doctors to share their story of hope and tremendous improvement two years after the surgery, they said: “We’ve had huge improvement. We were able to clean, shower far less, have more time to leave the home. The surgery helped ease our anxieties”.