Health Problem: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that develops after an individual experiences or witnesses actual or threatened death or serious injury to him/herself or someone else, and reacts to the event with a feeling of fear, helplessness, and/or horror. PTSD is a disruptive disorder that is associated with decreased job performance, increased prevalence of comorbid physical and mental health problems, substance abuse, poor quality of life, short- and long-term disability, increased suicide risk, and increased healthcare utilization.

Technology Description: SGB is an injection of local anesthetic into the neck. SGB may reduce symptoms associated with PTSD, due to its connection to brain regions that are abnormally activated in PTSD and have potential for influencing central systems associated with anxiety, including the central autonomic network and the cardiovascular system.

Controversy: Early data demonstrating success and generating enthusiasm for the use of SGB for the treatment of PTSD was derived from uncontrolled case reports and case series studies.

Key Questions:

  • Does SGB reduce or eliminate the symptoms of PTSD in adults?
  • How does PTSD compare with other strategies for treating PTSD in adults?
  • Is SGB a safe therapy for PTSD in adults?
  • Have definitive patient selection criteria been established for use of SGB as a therapy for PTSD in adults?

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