What is the purpose of this project?
This project has two purposes: (1) to test whether or not Stellate Ganglion Block is an effective treatment for the symptoms of PTSD and (2) to find out how participants feel about SGB compared to other options for the treatment of PTSD.
What does SGB mean?
A Stellate Ganglion Block, or “SGB,” involves an injection of a local anesthetic into the Stellate Ganglion which is a group of nerves in the neck that help regulate the body’s “fight or flight” mechanism.
What does this have to do with PTSD?
The SGB may potentially reduce PTSD symptoms.
Do participants get to decide whether or not they receive the SGB?
No. Participants will be randomly placed into one of two groups: Either (a) an Active Group in which patients receive the SGB or (b) a Control Group in which patients receive what is called a “sham procedure.” Those in the Control Group will have a procedure very much like an SGB; however, saline solution will be injected into an area of the neck close to the Stellate Ganglion but not in it.
What are the chances that I will receive the actual SGB?
The study is set up so that there is a 2 in 3 chance that you will receive the actual SGB. That is, for every 1 person assigned to the Control Group, 2 will be assigned to the Active Group and will receive a true SGB.
Can I still get an SGB if I am in the Control Group?
Yes. Even if you end up being placed in the Control Group, you may be able to get an SGB after your 8 week involvement in the study.
How many treatments will I receive?
If you enroll in the study and are deemed eligible to participate, you will receive an initial treatment and a second one two weeks later. Both treatments will be the same depending on which group you are assigned to. For instance, if you are assigned to the Active Group, both of your treatments will be SGBs. If you are assigned to the Control Group, both of your treatments will be shams, meaning that they look and feel just like an SGB but should have no effect.
Do I have to take any online assessments?
You will be asked to come to the Research Coordinator’s office an hour before each procedure to complete an assessment on a laptop computer. You also will be asked to complete follow up assessments via the internet at four, six and eight weeks after your first procedure. Your participation is voluntary, though- you do not have to answer any questions you do not wish to answer, and you may withdraw from the study at any time.
Are there any incentives being offered to participate?
Yes. You will be given electronic Amazon.com gift cards for your participation during off-duty hours in each stage of the study. These gift cards range in value from $10 to $20 depending on the task. The total amount you will be eligible for is $115 in Amazon.com gift cards.
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