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Doctor: Blood Pressure Medication Can Treat PTSD

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Seattle, WAA Washington state doctor believes that a commonly used blood pressure medication may be able to help veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Dr. Murray Raskind, director of the Veterans Affairs' Northwest Network for Mental Illness and vice chair of psychiatry at the University of Washington, told the KOMO News that he believes the drug will help combat the flashbacks, nightmares, irritability and difficulty sleeping that are associated with PTSD.

"This medication is called Prazosin," he said. "It's quite remarkable. Something as simple as sleep is so central to our daily function, and, I'm increasingly convinced, central to what we call PTSD."

Raskind also told the news provider that Prazosin is a highly effective approach to normalizing sleep, which can prevent the nightmares that many veterans with PTSD suffer.

One of the best aspects of Prazosin is that it's off-patent, which means it can be bought as a generic drug. However, because it is not marketed as a treatment for PTSD, many doctors and veterans are unaware of its benefits.

"Fifteen years later, it's been working out great," Larry Scott, a Vietnam veteran, told the news provider.

Raskind estimates that as many as 40 percent of veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from PTSD.


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