Stories of Inspiration: SGB Series Part 1: The Patients
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Stories of Inspiration

SGB Series Part 1: The Patients

September 28, 2020
Saving Lives Affected by Trauma
Video Time: 03:44 | Views: 545

Veterans and other trauma survivors say this groundbreaking 15-minute procedure was a game-changer–the difference between life and death. In this exclusive PenFed Digital series, meet three American heroes struggling with PTSD and get an up-close and personal account of their experience with the stellate ganglion block, or SGB.

If you know anyone coping with post-traumatic stress, whether a veteran, rape survivor or someone else who has endured traumatic events, you’ll want to watch and share this unprecedented series.

Out of all the emotions,
guilt is the only emotion
that you can't handle on your own.
I watched my friends burn to death
on a dusty road
in the middle of Afghanistan.
Joe is a Marine Corps combat veteran,
still fighting a constant battle
with depression.
I think the first therapy session I had
like the therapist just started crying
and I was like, What the [bleep]?
I broke the therapist.
As an ICU nurse,
we're used to losses,
you know that not...
Shannon is an intensive care nurse
treating COVID patients
in a New York City hospital.
You know that not every patient
is going to make it.
But I've never experienced
90% of my patients dying.
I've also never experienced
my patients having to die alone,
with only me holding their hand
as they die.
Such an angry dude.
Just so angry all the time.
And I'm just exhausted.
Sidney is a Marine Corps combat veteran
who calls violence his personal vice.
Violence being my tool for so long.
I don't really know any other way to be.
I feel the nerves,
you know, to feel them wide open,
they're sensitive, they're raw all the time.
You know, it's always there,
you know,
and then something happens
and I boil over.
And then I'm wide open for days,
weeks, maybe.
Three people whose lives are ravaged
by post-traumatic stress.
Each one of them has attempted suicide.
I really do a hatchet job
on myself.
I become hyper critical.
Everything. I'm fat, I'm ugly.
I'm not a good nurse.
I'm not smart enough.
I'm not you know,
I'm not enough.
That's really at the end of the day.
I'm not enough.
All three patients
have come to the Stella Center in Chicago
to get an injection known as
the stellate ganglion block or SGB.
It’s been used since 1925
to treat chronic pain.
But Dr. Eugene Lipov
has perfected its use for PTSD.
He claims the success rate
is more than 80%.
If somebody has a broken leg
and you have an X ray of the leg,
and it's broken,
you don't ask somebody to walk on it.
He says post-traumatic stress
is an injury too.
And it’s time the medical profession
acknowledged that.
When somebody comes in with PTSD
they go well,
you're mentally...
You're weak.
Something's wrong with you.
You don't really have it.
When you scan it, you go whoa,
you have an amygdala that’s hyper activated,
you have a problem.
Let me help you.
Think how powerful that whole concept is.
The amygdala is connected
to the stellate ganglion,
a group of nerves in the neck
that sends messages to the brain
in response to stress.
When it's overactive,
it causes anxiety,
irritability, hypervigilance
and sleep issues in a person with PTSD.
Dr. Lipov injects a local anesthetic
into the stellate ganglion,
which reboots it
to a normal resting state.
Sidney you did really well.
You're all done.
The shot often takes effect immediately
and can last for months or years.
Up next. Post op.
And the immediate impact of the shot.
The colors are brighter.

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