Friday, March 24, 2023

Comments by Douglas Kent

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  • Hello Chris,
    Reading your story makes me feel sorry for your profound disappointment: I agree you have been let down by health care services you have received. You mentioned onset of symptoms occurred after a traumatic event. In psychotherapy specialized to traumatic stress reactions, memories are processed in a way that one knows they are working at the core of their traumatic injuries – a far different experience than feeling one has had a nice chat with a caring person. Your tag line suggested you may be located in Australia, so what is available to you may differ from what is in the USA. Current studies suggest that Prolonged Exposure (PE), Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) can be helpful, my preference is the latter of these. The US Food and Drug Administration currently approves only Sertraline (Zoloft) and Paroxetine (Paxil) for PTSD. These names, or their equivalent, may differ in Australia. Though not likely to cure PTSD, they may help one tolerate distress, if needed, during memory processing therapy. Also mentioned was the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (published by the American Psychiatric Association) the contents of which, in my opinion, are highly politicized and serving of particular interests, including individuals serving on committees protective of their own career interests. Though this manual is required for use by insurance companies in the US, it has little other utility, in my opinion. If you are seeking a diagnostic label, you might consider inquiring about the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10, soon to be updated to 11), which more explicitly addresses complex traumatic stress reactions. If you are willing to try something more focused to your needs, a search for services near you that specifically address complex trauma may be of interest. Wishing you the best!