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PTSD Therapy: One Trillion DollarsDr. Phil Leveque Salem-News.com
...U.S. Gov't Estimates $600 Billion... the probabilities of fraud are enormous
(MOLALLA, Ore.) - Anyone who has read any of my articles on this subject will know that I have spent much time and effort putting my articles together and I have had few readers disagree with me.
I was a frontline Combat Infantryman as a Battalion Scout, Pointman and Forward Observer in WWII. My worst days were crossing the Rhine river with 150 men killed or wounded and 20 men lost attacking a German machine gun. My best day was the day my buddy and I captured 26 Nazi Officers. If those times weren’t harrowing enough, I’ll listen to your stories.
I have also seen soldiers “fall apart” on the front lines. I also have PTSD myself and I have been a doctor successfully treating about 1000 PTSD Vets plus probably a hundred or more civilians and policemen. I think I know what I am talking about??
I also know that PTSD has been a problem since men started fighting Saber Toothed Tigers and also the most dangerous animal, other men.
Opium and alcohol have been the drugs of choice since time one and we haven’t made much progress since. As a physician/pharmacologist, I was not surprised when Viet Nam PTSD Veterans told me that Cannabis/Marijuana (C/MJ) worked well for “battle terrors” and also PTSD. Some Viet Nam Vets called it “hootch” which I call alcohol. They told me hootch was better than Opium, maybe alcohol and much better than any drugs given them by Army or VA doctors. In fact, there are many Veterans groups who know and demand the right to use C/MJ as medicine. The VA has just allowed it without punishing the Vets.
There may be more than 1,000,000 PTSD Veterans in the U.S. but very few are being effectively treated by the VA. Because of the REEFER MADNESS atmosphere, C/MJ has been relegated to the back alleys but it is coming back very strong as medicine.
The VA has finally recognized that their treatments with Morphine-like drugs and the horrible anti-depressant drugs do not work well. It has spawned a whole bunch of “witch doctor” treatments, I will list some of them I know about:
1. Group therapy of PTSD Vets did not/does not really work well. Vets have their own “bitch sessions.”
2. Talking with a Therapist doesn’t work much better. Most PTSD Vets can’t talk about their “demons” to anybody.
3. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) seems to be an offshoot of the previous. (WE CAN’T TALK ABOUT OUR WORST HORRORS)
4. They also have Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT); and
6. Eye Movement Desensitizing and Reprocessing (EMDR) reminds me of “gourd rattling”.
7. They also have used SSRIs which are anti-depressants which work only rarely and have BAD side effects.
8. Family Therapy involves spouses and family. There is no question that the spouse and family are impacted as much as the PTSD Veteran. The relationship is frequently mutually destructive.
The VA says these “treatments” should last for months or even years. Many PTSD Vets will have these demons the rest of their lives- that is why all the expense.
This brings me to what is going on now in the face of poor results at unbelievable high costs. We have dog therapy, horse therapy, water therapy, massage therapy, art therapy and the most recent PTSD therapy model based on computer war games and touted by Dr. Albert (Skippy) Rizzo of The University of Southern California, it is called VIRTUAL REALITY EXPOSURE THERAPY1 which exposes PTSD Vets to authentic battle sounds which usually scare the pants off a real Combat Infantryman Veteran.
I assumed that I was one of the few which looked askance at his reported results (WE CAN’T STAND AUTHENTIC BATTLE SOUNDS). One factor Dr. Rizzo doesn’t seem to know is that PTSD is a spectrum of severity from 1 to 10. One being slight while 10 is the worst and usually includes those in insane asylums, murderers and suicides.
He reports successful therapy with 20 patients but buried in his article VR PTSD EXPOSURE THERAPY (VRET) are that many potential patients refused to participate or very quickly refused to continue participation. In the meantime his VRET “treatments” lasted from 90 to 120 minutes twice a week for 5 weeks. This is where One Trillion Dollars would go for this psychological therapy.
Many Veterans groups in the U.S., such as VETERANS TODAY, have pressed the VA and legislators the right to use C/MJ. It should be coming soon!!
CANNABIS IS STILL BEST FOR PTSD !!
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Email him: Newsroom@Salem-News.com
More information on the history of Leveque can be found in his book, General Patton's Dogface Soldier of Phil Leveque about his experiences in WWII.
Order the book by mail by following this link: Dogface Soldier.
If you are a World War II history buff, you don't want to miss it.<
Watch for more streaming video question and answer segments about medical marijuana with Bonnie King Dr. Phil Leveque.
Click on this link for other articles and video segments about PTSD and medical marijuana on Salem-News.com: Dr. Leveque INTERVIEWS & ARTICLES
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