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PTSD Conference At USC

January 18, 2013

I attended a PTSD Conference at USC yesterday afternoon.  It actually was entitled “Military Operational Medicine Research Program” and was given by Colonel Carl Castro.  It was scheduled as a 2 hour conference and I only wish it were longer.  Col Castro was an excellent speaker and very down to Earth and informative.

Some interesting tidbits that I can pass on: Can you guess the number of drugs that are being used on soldiers with PTSD?  He stated that there are over 200 different drugs that have been prescribed for PTSD according to their research.  Of these drugs, do you know how many are actually FDA approved for PTSD? I was startled to find out that there are only 2 drugs that have been FDA approved for PTSD.  These drugs are Zoloft and Paxil.  Col Castro said that when they researched further into these 2 drugs and then researched their applications, he found that PTSD had been excluded as an application for both of these 2 drugs.

This was eye opening to me, to find that we still are pretty much in the dark with PTSD.  This is especially true since we’ve known about this illness, no matter what it was labeled, since World War II or perhaps even longer.  The only real research is being done today and never before.  Still psychology, the talking cure, is the most effective method of treatment not drugs, at least to this point

Col Castro went on to give this quote which stuck with me.  “Wouldn’t it be nice if we could intervene before bad things occur?” PTSD sufferers often are involved with alcohol or drugs, they have an explosive rage incidents, they are having serious marital problems, they are homeless or have some other after-effects of the PTSD that many, if not all of us with PTSD have experienced. Sometimes, by this time they finally report having problems with PTSD, the situation has become so much bigger than if it been dealt with much much earlier.

Posting is an excellent first step in the PTSD therapy process.  It is so much easier for someone to honestly deal with their issues with themselves first. Not by trying to “not think about it” but by writing their feelings down so that they are aired in public. They can start to put shape to these feelings and if they continue to post, they will start to see that their PTSD problems do exist. This is so much better than swallowing the feelings and pretending not to notice. At some point, by ignoring these feelings, they eventally will be too big to contain.

This site is still free and posting is easy.  You can say what you want, from day to day experiences to more serious issues. Grappling with deeper emotions that you can’t understand takes courage and time.  There is support here from others that are feeling similar feelings as you, who may comment or they may simply say things in a way that makes sense to you.  You help others while you are helping yourself. They are doing the same.

A quote that struck me w