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Nov-27-2013 23:11printcomments

Post Traumatic Stress (PTS): New, Fake Treatments Reported by CBS News

Cannabis best relieves PTS, say most veterans.

Dr. Phil Leveque
Dr. Phil Leveque, now and then (1944)

(PORTLAND, Ore.) - I was both astonished and bewildered by Scott Kelly's TV program, The War Within: Treating PTS. It appears that Dr. Kevin Reeder, who acts more like a psychologist guarding his turf, somehow got to Kelly to promote a PTS treatment called “Prolonged Exposure Therapy”, which after years of use does not really work. How he got some 16 PTS veterans to participate really baffles me.

For me to intervene in this brouhaha requires my introduction to the subject.

I was a college graduate when I volunteered in 1944. I had had a full year of psychology for me to try to figure out what made people function. Later in med school, I had a full year of psychiatry. Neither helped me figure out why people do what they do, or not do.

The infantry was a burning crucible of SNAFU, FUBAR, and another bunch of the same. It was all crazy, by any standard. My ultimate boss was General Patton. We, in the front lines, knew he was crazy, but he was running the show.

I observed total PTS breakdowns on the front lines, by my buddies and the total ignorant, arrogant demands by our officers to try to “cure” PTS on the front lines by screaming at the victims. I was way ahead of the front lines most of the time, and I was probably about to crack when I was courts-martialed and confined to a house on the front lines by my crazy battalion commander. He is lucky he survived the war. I think they took away my ammunition!

Scott Kelly's program was excellent in presenting what PTS can do to a soldier, but he made many errors.

First of all, PTS is not a single, finite problem. It must be graded from 1-10. Anything below a 4 is not really serious. Anything above a 5 can be serious, and the 8-9-10's may be beyond standard medical help. It is most likely they are the suicides, the spouse beaters and murderers. I doubt if any of those were in Scott Kelly's CBS program.

Secondly, in the upper levels of PTS, the main symptom is psychological inability to talk about their most horrible memories. I saw the sweat on many of the faces of those interviewed. To have them write down and talk four or five times about these horrible memories of PTS is way beyond psychological torture.

I note that three PTS veterans had to quit the program. How the rest persisted is beyond my understanding. One of the veterans, when he was asked, “How did you cope?” his answer was “alcohol, and lots of it.” Then he reverted to crack cocaine.

Dr. Kevin Reeder promotes Prolonged Exposure Therapy. This is pure psychological torture. They already have this! The PTS victims reported all of the effects and symptoms of combat stress: Avoidance, Isolation, Hyper-vigilance, Insomnia, Anxiety, Irritability, and Nightmares. Reciting all these IS psychological torture.

Getting back to my own history, I am a physician and in my regular practice I had several PTS veterans. Their choice medicine was alcohol, and lots of it. They had completely rejected the Veterans Administration's narcotics, Valium, anti-depressants and anti-psychotics.

The Vietnam PTS veterans had discovered in 'Nam that cannabis/marijuana (C/MJ) was the best medicine for battle terrors - the predecessor to PTS. When C/MJ became legal in Oregon and other states, I ended up with about 1,000 PTS veterans, possibly more than any other doctor. The reason for this is not complicated.... I have PTS myself, and I knew what they were going through.

A possible sidelight to all of this is that the body produces its own Cannabis-like substance called Anandamide. C/MJ acts in exactly the same way.

I checked my computer, searching for “Cannabis Cures PTS”. I have posted at least a dozen articles on this subject and other authors have posted about 100.

Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PET) and its cousin, Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), are both useless frauds and a severe threat to the sanity and survival of the 16 veterans in this program, and the 1,000,000 veterans of our current wars.

CANNABIS IS THE BEST THERAPY FOR PTS!

For more information, SEARCH "Marijuana Leveque Cannabis", &/or see this article: Dr Phil Leveque: The Coolest 90-Year Old on Planet Earth

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Jonathan Davis November 29, 2013 10:40 am (Pacific time)

Doctor, As an Iraq veteran and graduate of the VA's cognitive processing therapy program, I wholeheartedly disagree with your assessment of CPT. CPT changed my life and I think your article irresponsibly will dissuade others from pursuing a therapeutic environment that has the potential to make lasting changes. Telling people to stop going to therapy and to simply use cannabis is simply irresponsible as a doctor. Full disclosure, I participated in both therapies. I would like to talk to you about this more than what is acceptable on a message board. Please feel free to contact me. I am a law student who plans to change the way PTSD is addressed in this country. Respectfully, Jonathan Davis jdavi221@fiu.edu

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