Online Program

Expanding the evidence-base for alternative and complementary health practices: Advancing treatment options for post-traumatic stress disorder

Monday, November 4, 2013 : 5:10 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.

Elspeth Cameron Ritchie, MD, MPH, Department of Mental Health, District of Columbia, Washington, DC
Maryam Navaie, DrPH, Advance Health Solutions, LLC, San Diego, CA
Anita H. Hickey, MD, Pain Medicine and Integrative Medicine, United States Naval Hospital Okinawa, Okinawa, Japan
Eric T. Stedje-Larsen, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Naval Medical Center San Diego, San Diego, CA
Jessica C. Smith, MPH, Advance Health Solutions, LLC, Chicago, IL
Eugene G. Lipov, MD, Chicago Medical Innovations, Hoffman Estates, IL
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is among the most common Axis I disorders, with an estimated lifetime prevalence of 7% in the U.S. Significantly higher prevalence rates are observed among combat-exposed service members and veterans. Current evidence-based PTSD therapies have limited reach and impact, leading physicians to explore the potential benefits of alternative and complementary health practices (ACHP). More commonly known ACHP for PTSD include acupuncture and virtual reality. An emerging ACHP for PTSD is stellate ganglion block (SGB), a well-established pain management procedure. In relation to PTSD, a growing body of empirical evidence suggests that >1 SGB treatments result in rapid symptom improvements. Similar to other ACHP, positive outcomes are not universally documented nor mechanistically well understood for SGB. Nonetheless, SGB appears to have a “calming effect” in PTSD. This session will present (a) an overview of ACHP for PTSD, (b) differential patient-reported outcomes for leading ACHP for PTSD including results specific to SGB's impact on improving PTSD symptoms in >100 case reports among military, veteran and civilian patients, and (c) a discussion about future directions for research to address the many remaining questions about ACHP for PTSD such as efficacy, comparative effectiveness, mechanism(s) of actions, dosing, and differential responses among subgroups. The session will conclude by conveying the important message that although the current ACHP evidence-base for PTSD precludes our ability to draw definitive conclusions to inform clinical practice or public policy, the available evidence points to a promising opportunity for a much needed paradigm shift in PTSD treatment.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Chronic disease management and prevention
Clinical medicine applied in public health
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Provision of health care to the public

Learning Objectives:
Identify leading and most promising alternative and complementary health practices for post-traumatic stress disorder Differentiate health outcomes using various alternative and complementary health practices for post-traumatic stress disorder secondary to the emerging evidence-base

Keyword(s): Alternative Medicine/Therapies, Mental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have served as a Principal Investigator or Co-Investigator of many clinical and epidemiological research studies resulting in accumulation of extensive experience managing clinical trials (Phases I-IV), observational studies, health services research and health economic studies. My experience spans working with a wide range of populations (adults and children) and clinical conditions examining physical, psychological, and emotional health outcomes including research studies specific to investigating the application of various CAM modalities on PTSD.
Any relevant financial relationships? Yes

Name of Organization Clinical/Research Area Type of relationship
Chicago Medical Innovations PTSD research Consultant

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.