Friday, December 22, 2006

PTSD and Futility

This article from Mark Benjamin is an excellent read on the problems coming from the soldiers perceived use and abuse with no real understanding of their repeated deployments to Iraq.

Despite nearly a week of phone calls and e-mails, Army medical officials failed to make anyone available to Salon to discuss the issue. Ira Katz, deputy chief patient care services officer for mental health at the Department of Veterans Affairs, did speak with Salon. Not surprisingly, he seemed much more circumspect than the nongovernmental experts about any relationship between disenchantment and mental wounds. He emphasized that such a correlation has not been thoroughly studied. "I don’t think it is proven," Katz said. He then suggested that it might not even be worth studying. "Why does it matter? ... Our job is to treat suffering and impairment." (The outside experts also argue that discussing serious disenchantment with PTSD-afflicted veterans should be an important part of their therapy. Katz disagreed.)

Then there is this quote, oh my god Sally Satel agrees with other PTSD expects on this issue, did hell freeze over?
There is remarkable unanimity among experts on the issue, largely based on their experiences treating veterans. "When people have grave doubts about whether it was all worthwhile, it may make their psychological problems worse," explained Dr. Arthur S. Blank Jr., who helped pioneer the diagnosis of PTSD after the Vietnam War. Even those who question the pervasiveness of PTSD accept the connection between mental health and a belief in the military's mission. Sally Satel, a psychiatrist and resident scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, has drawn fire from veterans' groups and some of her medical colleagues for claiming that PTSD might not be as widespread as some data suggests. But on the connection between disillusionment and PTSD, Satel and her peers agree. "Demoralization, or the difficulty of making meaning of a task, is one of the risk factors," Satel confirmed in an interview.

The families need more education on the problems that PTSD causes, the soldiers will more than likely ignore them or drink or try drugs, the families have to look for the signs of trouble and get help before it gets to late to help their loved one before they make their lives worse, by letting PTSD go untreated.

1 comment:

sallykish said...

Hello Everyone.

Issue: PTSD - Real, or Imagined?

Anyone who has seen the movie "Patton", with George C. Scott, knows that Patton believed those being treated for 'shell shock' [Civil War - Nostalgia; WWI - Shell Shock; WWII - Battle Fatigue; After Vietnam - Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)], or 'battle fatigue' must surely be a malingerer, a sissy, a weakling, a punk, an undesirable, etc., worthy of ridicule by all...

In WWI, there were hand-dug trenches that allowed men to move around in, because ontop was no-man's land. Some men fought their senses so many times, fought against what they knew to do what they had been order, so many times, that they "feared" going 'over-the-top'.

In WWI, the punishment for not 'going-over-the-top' was to be shot dead by one's own leader.

So, what is going on today that might compromise what senses demand and what orders decree? Is it that that human beings act in response to goals; limited goals either of short or long duration? Do this, get that. If this, then that. On, off.

What is the mission? Do the mission then what? But, wait, the mission was changed while you were out!

Can't you keep up?

New mission; now! get to it...

Hey, you out there, you are doing mission "D", changes were made and we are on mission "A" again...

No excuses, we are a "flexible" unit! Shape up; meanwhile, give me those stripes back!

So you have lost friends...join the club!

Work with the army we have, not the one you would like to have! You need bullets? We dont have any right now, so make a sling-shot out of the elastic in your underwear; and do it without complaints, while they are shooting at you...

Nobody else is complaing, you are the only one...

So, when someone's whole body is shaking, when they are 'blowing-raspberries'(taking one's finger and diddling their lip) and humming show-tunes from a happier time, when they are just asking for a moment to think about what is happening to them...

Are they faking it?

Are they weaker then you expect them to be?

Or dont you care about that part it? Only results; the results I have determined without information is right for me to demand of you...get it done! I want it! Move it; move it now!

Hope this helps.

alan joseph samson
I Want Justice! Webring - Ringmaster