PTSD Clinic for Veterans

A wonderful attribute of oriental medicine (OM) is its ability to affect many people, disorders and diseases. Many times, OM's treatments and results can be administered and experienced in a quick and effective manner. While instant results such as a reduction in symptoms are rather common, for chronic conditions long term treatment is needed many times to help bring healing to the root of the disorder.

A strong example of this is the use of OM in "At Ease," NUHS' free veteran's post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) clinic. The PTSD clinic serves veterans that have given our country and us so much of themselves, and as a result, are carrying wounds within themselves from the battles they fought. Often, they receive the OM treatments as an adjunct treatment to other therapies they are receiving outside of the NUHS clinic.

Through the application of acupuncture, primarily auricular acupuncture, these veterans are able to receive some relief in their PTSD symptoms. A common procedure in the PTSD clinic is for the patient to receive five acupuncture needles in each ear. It is believed that these needles work directly with neurotransmitters in the brain, much like pharmaceuticals, helping to reduce stress, blood pressure, and decrease the psychological symptoms PTSD creates. It has been seen and reported that the combination of OM alongside other prescribed treatments greatly improves the quality of life for veterans suffering from PTSD.  

Dr. Frank Yurasek

This clinic was created by Frank Yurasek, PhD, MSOM, (shown above), who is also very involved in the Wounded Warrior Project and Bethesda Naval Hospital. Dr. Yurasek has found OM therapies, ranging from auricular acupuncture to medical Qi Gong, have a profound impact on veterans experiencing PTSD. He has been researching and applying his research to this field for many years. As a result, he brings a vast amount of knowledge and first-hand experience to each patient. In addition to his skills and knowledge, it is apparent that he genuinely cares about each and every patient in the clinic. Dr. Yurasek's compassion runs just as rich as his knowledge base.

I am fortunate to have started interning this trimester with Dr. Yurasek in the PTSD clinic. I have always held great honor and esteem for those in the military and feel extremely grateful to have this opportunity to work with them. I feel very encouraged for each patient as I watch the promising results I see during each treatment. While I am not aware of any instant cure for PTSD, I think it is reassuring to know there is much more patients can do to find their way out of the disorder then they may have realized before. 

I encourage those of you reading this blog to share the PTSD clinic information with those you know. From what I am learning, many veterans go years without receiving help, or enough help for PTSD. This greatly decreases their quality of life, and of those they care for and love. We would be honored to have them come to our free PTSD clinic and help them to the best of our abilities!