As the VA struggles to deal with the overwhelming number of cases of Veterans suffering from PTS, new approaches are beginning to manifest themselves. From Equine therapy to Transcendental Meditation, no approach is being dismissed lightly given the clear evidence that prescription drugs have not proven to be successful in providing a long term cure.
SFTT is thrilled to count on the assistance of Yuval Neria (see below) is a Special Advisor to SFTT’s Medical Task Force. We welcome his active collaboration.
PTSD generic paxil 20 mg tablet affects veterans’ spouses, tooksl.comResearchers have know for some time that PTSD places relationships at risk, but this new research raises red flags for health risks for a spouse or partner. “It’s having an effect beyond the vet …
Military May Be Turning to Meditation for PTSD. Military May Be Turning to Meditation for PTSD With its emphasis on developing tranquility, meditation may seem an odd fit for the military. But recent studies have shown that mindfulness …
It is pleasing to see that CBS decided to feature one of the 120 or so Veteran Treatment Courts in the United States on one of its most popular investigative programs: 60 Minutes. Found below is a brief summary of this very moving and disturbing report:
Two and a half million Americans have served in Iraq and Afghanistan; many of them, more than once. The VA tells us about 20 percent come home with post-traumatic stress disorder, known as PTSD. So, that comes to about 500,000. For some, returning is harder than they imagined. The suicide rate for the Army is up 15 percent over last year. For the Marines its up 28 percent. A few of our troops return to become something they never thought they could be: criminals, for the first time in their lives.
Around Houston, in Harris County, Texas, 400 veterans are locked up every month. We met a judge there who saw them coming before the bench, fresh out of the warzone and he thought a lot of them were worth saving. Judge for yourself once you meet some of our troops, coming home.
A byproduct of the 1995 Crime Bill, the Veterans Treatment Court (Vets Court for short) is a way for Veterans facing jail time to avoid incarceration. If they accept, they are assigned to a mentoring Veteran and must remain drug-free for two years, obtain a high school diploma and have a steady job at the end of the probation period. This may seem like a good deal, but the path to recover their lives is difficult and fraught with temptation, particularly for those Veterans with PTSD.
SFTT applauds those in law enforcement and the judicial system and supporting Veterans organization for developing such an effective and common sense approach to help Veterans reintegrate into society. 60 Minutes paints a very sympathetic picture of the Veterans Administration in this rehabilitation process, but Vets that we have talked to who have participated in Vet Court programs paint a somewhat different picture.
It is evident that there is a high incidence of dependency on drugs, potent painkillers, antidepressants and alcohol among those with PTSD. One graduate of the Veterans Court Program who now is a substance abuse counselor told me that close to 90% of Vets with PTSD have substance abuse issues.
Now, the VA has very strict rules on issuing prescription medication to Veterans with documented substance abuse problems. In other words, it may be difficult for Veterans to receive proper treatment for PTSD if substance abuse and PTSD are treated as mutually exclusive problems. This clearly introduces a level of difficulty for the VA in providing the type of comprehensive rehabilitation treatment these Vets deserve. Some may call it Catch 22, but I am sure our Vets find it no laughing matter.
In any event, SFTT applauds the Veteran Treatment Courts and is committed to help them expand across the United States.
It’s hard to know what what works best when dealing with military Vets with symptoms of PTSD or TBI. For certain, we have learned that there is no “silver bullet” solution and that drugs tend to address symptoms rather than provide any “real” long term improvement, let alone cure. In fact, anecdotal evidence and SFTT’s research suggests that most current “treatment” programs often over prescribe drugs and this will often lead to drug dependency with explosive consequences.
Earlier, SFTT reported that OxyContin or “Hillbilly Heroin” was regularly prescribed to Veterans by the VA. The side effects were devastating and some independent researchers have suggested that the prescription of OxyContin actually led to more self-destructive behavior in Vets rather than provide any real cure.
SFTT Medical Advisory Board is examining all recommended PTSD treatment options. Your generous contribution help insure that our brave warriors get proper information on treatment modalities and where possible discover treatment options that may be better suited to their particular circumstances.
The articles below illustrate the ongoing debate about various drug treatment modalities and their repercussions. Please note that the articles below describe the complexity of dealing with PTSD and neither SFTT nor or Medical Advisory Board necessarily recommends any of treatment modalities discussed below:
PSTD vets given drugs against guidelines. The study, published in Psychiatric Services, found in 2009, among all veterans with PTSD who had continuous VA medication use, 65.7 percent were prescribed elective serotonin-norepinephrine …
The Deadly Rise of Prescription Drug Abuse in the Military. Over the past decade, the military has spent $1.6 billion on painkillers (opioids) such as Oxycontin and Hydrocodone. $2.7 billion has been spent on anti-depressants and …
Military turns to meditation for PTSD. PTSD is usually treated with drugs, behavioral therapy and other approaches. But for many, these methods don’t work. Now, researchers are looking at a new method that might limit future c …
Potential Therapy for PTSD? My research focuses on the harmful effects of a class of drugs called quinolines, most notably the antimalarial drug mefloquine (or Lariam), which has been widely prescribed to deployed troops in Somalia, Iraq, an …
The website is patriot outreach.org, I have nothing to do with this organization other than I know it has changed lives. It’s very simple and powerful.
Clearly, the symptoms of PTSD can be traumatic for the veteran and loved ones. Many organizations promise support, but very few deliver a replicable and comprehensive treatment program that allows veterans a better than average chance of reclaiming their lives. Claims of successe in dealing with this terrible affliction need to be carefully evaluated.
As research into PTSD continues to grow, researchers are beginning to get a better handle on what works and what doesn’t. Sadly, there are far too many situations where Vets have been over-medicated, but other alternative forms of treatment such as the Hyperbaric Treatment developed by Dr. Paul Harch seem to offer great hope in treating PTSD. SFTT salutes those who give of their time and money to support the needs of our men and women in uniform.
There are few people who inspire more respect and admiration than our brave servicemen and women — those willing to selflessly serve their country and at times, even face death for the sake of others. While it is always a …
Mindfulness and meditation training could ease PTSD symptoms, researchers say. PTSD is usually treated with drugs, behavioral therapy and other approaches. But for many, these methods don’t work. Now, researchers are looking at a new met …
War zone killing leaves troops with ‘moral injury,’ may rival PTSD cases. Though there may be some overlap in symptoms, moral injuries aren’t what most people think of as PTSD, the nightmares and flashbacks of terrifying, life-threatening combat …
If so, have you or your twin served in a war zone?
Lisa Shin, PhD and colleagues in the Department of Psychiatry at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) are conducting a study to examine brain activity in individuals with and without post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). They seek participants who are identical twins in which one co-twin experienced combat and the other did not. You do not have to have PTSD to participate.
The study takes place in Boston. Travel expenses are covered by the study and participants are paid $500 for their time. Participation is completely voluntary and confidential.
Editor’s Note: The announcement above was posted on behalf of the Department of Psychiatry at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). If you know of anyone with the characteristics described above who might be willing to participate in this study, please contact Lindsay Staples.
New material surfaces daily on the internet and in user discussion forums dealing with the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (“PTSD”). Regrettably, most of this advice is not supported by good clinical scientific studies or trustworthy explanation. The road to health and wellness is a long process and treatment procedures will be different based on the particular individual, the extent of the stress and his or her current social and financial circumstances.
SFTT or “Stand For The Troops” has put together an eminent circle of physicians, clinical psychologists and therapists to evaluate these promising treatments. While some of these emerging new techniques will appear on a regular basis on SFTT, visitors are firmly counseled to refer to their physician or primary care giver before altering treatment.
Found below are highlights of recurring themes as we mobilize forces to deal with the ravages of PTSD.
Cincinnati State, Cincinnati VA Medical Center to offer PTSD classes
Cincinnati State, in conjunction with the Cincinnati VA Medical Center, will offer two free classes this month on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The classes are geared toward the Emergency Medical Services community and other first responders.
He spoke last week, a day before attending Massachusetts funeral services for his friend, who had PTSD and served at Iraq’s Abu Graib prison during one of two deployments. “I don’t think he’d ever say, ‘Hey, I want to kill myself,’ but … certainly …
Eilhys England, Chairperson of Stand For The Troops received the following Thanksgiving note from Maj. Ben Richards.
I would like to thank Stand for the Troops and the many individuals and organizations who have contributed to help my family and me. We have been truly fortunate. Last week I returned home to my family in Iowa after a two-month course of pro bono hyperbaric treatment arranged by SFTT and conducted by Dr. Paul Harch in New Orleans. The treatment has been very beneficial. I will share more details about the treatment in a future post.
Dr. Harch is uncomfortable being spotlighted for his work, but I would like to recommend him to you as a man of extraordinary character, compassion and patriotism. All of us in the military community should be grateful to know there are men and women like Dr. Harch who are dedicated to healing the wounds we have incurred in our service at great personal cost to themselves. Dr. Harch has provided care to dozens of veterans like me who are suffering from the invisible injuries of war with great success and at his own expense. I would like to point out that Dr. Harch provides hyperbaric care for a number of other conditions at his clinic for less than a quarter of the cost of the same treatment at nearby hospitals. He has traded personal wealth to heal many who otherwise would not be able to afford healing care. It has been my privilege to get to know him.
Next week I will travel to Bethesda, Maryland, for two months of different type of treatment for TBI. The treatment is called Flexyx Neurotherapy. It uses small electrical pulses to improve brain activity. I will be undergoing treatment at the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences. The cost of treatment has been covered by a research grant. Travel and living expenses have been covered by generous donations.
I am more optimistic about my future than I have been in years and I am truly grateful for the blessings and support my family and I have received.
Editors Note: We too are delighted at the tremendous progress shown by Maj. Ben Richards. As chronicled in previous entries, the noticeable improvement after the hyperbaric treatment conducted by Dr. Paul Harch in New Orleans is little short of remarkable. We are hopeful of seeing similar results with the Flexyx Neurotherapy in Maryland. A special word of thanks to all those who have made contributions to support Maj. Richards on his road to wellness.
According to studies quoted by Fox News, brain images may reveal Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (“PTSD”)risk before problems begin to materialize. Previous studies have proven the brains of individuals with Post traumatic stress disorder vary from individuals with no condition. For example, certain brain areas are more compact in individuals with Post traumatic stress disorder, in comparison with individuals who experienced distressing occasions, but who didn’t develop unusual behavioral reactions.
Each day new guidance appears on the Internet and in forums dealing with the treatment of PTSD similar to the Fox News reports on Brain scans. Unfortunately, the majority of this help and advice is not supported by solid clinical scientific tests or highly regarded explanation. Though there are quite
Stand For The Troops has constructed a prestigious circle of physicians, clinical psychologists and therapists to examine these promising treatments. While some of these emerging new techniques will appear regularly on SFTT, readers are seriously counseled to see their physician or primary care giver before switching treatment. See all tales about this subject »
Veterans administration Clinic seeks female veterans for brand new Post traumatic stress disorder study
Cortisol is called the “fight or flight” hormone. Studies have proven greater amounts of cortisol may really hurt the mind and become associated with Post traumatic stress disorder signs and symptoms. Through the years, scientists have analyzed Post traumatic stress disorder to try and comprehend the underlying brain processes. See all tales about this subject »
Programs helps Veterans adapt to existence home
Doan not just provides extensive experience like a dog trainer, but is another adding author of the greatest Practices Paper on training Post traumatic stress disorder Service Dogs for help Worldwide. Last November., Doan stated she in the privilege to talk at Harvard … See all tales about this subject »
To his credit, former Vice Chief of Staff General Peter Chiarelli has always been at the forefront of focusing the public’s attention on the “unintended consequences of war” facing our brave men and women when they return home from repeated deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq. His moving and pointed introduction to the 2010 report seeking to understand the increasing rates of suicides among military personnel demonstrates his resolve in supporting our men and women in uniform. The 350 page report entitled “Health Promotion Risk Reduction Suicide Prevention,” painted a rather disturbing picture of the terrible and ongoing “mental” costs faced by our military veterans and their families. Sadly, two years later, the problems are compounding rather than diminishing.
General Chiarelli is currently CEO of One Mind For Research, a new-model non-profit dedicated to delivering accelerated new treatments and cures for all brain illness and injury within ten years time.
SFTT concurs with General Chiarelli grim assessment of the situation and has realigned its energies to focus on PTS (“Post Traumatic Stress”). In fact, SFTT has formed a Medical Task Force to evaluate current and emerging treatment methodologies to provide long term treatment to veterans who suffer from this debilitating injury.
While General Chiarelli and others have raised public awareness of the ravages of these debilitating injuries, we have been lax as a society to accept the consequences of sending young men and women to war. Make no mistake, PTS and TBI have terrifying social consequences that extend well beyond the individual who suffers these debilitating injuries. Thanks to the generous support of approach to dealing with trauma and many other concerned individuals, we are now beginning to mobilize the necessary resources to attack this problem head on.
SFTT welcomes General Chiarelli’s call to action to provide our military personnel with the best available treatment to help return them to wellness.
Yesterday evening, WWLTV.com in Louisiana carried a very moving “progress report” on
Maj. Richards’ tragic story was chronicled by New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof who wrote an article in August entitled “War Wounds.” For reasons that seem inexplicable to the average American, the Veterans Administration, the Defense Department and our government seemed to wash their hands of any responsibility of the injuries suffered by Maj. Richards. Eilhys England, Chairperson of SFTT, immediately contacted Maj. Richards and put him in touch with Dr. Paul Harch (shown in the video below) who has been providing Ben with Harch Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatments pro bono.
We are thrilled that Maj. Richards has made so much progress and SFTT is most grateful to those West Point classmates, friends and colleagues who have generously contributed to a fund to support his family while undergoing this treatment.
While we don’t leave our troops behind on the battlefield, why should their needs be neglected when they return home? If you feel strongly about supporting our brave heroes like Maj. Ben Richards, consider becoming a member of SFTT. Your generous contributions help our team find and evaluate promising treatment programs so our brave heroes can reclaim their lives.
For only $35 a year you can stand with us and Stand for the Troops