The Stellate Ganglion Block (SGB)  is an adjunct treatment that may enhance the effectiveness of a comprehensive mental health plan.

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What is the Stellate Ganglion Block (SGB)?

Stellate Ganglion Block (SGB) is a procedure in which a local anaesthetic is injected next to the stellate ganglion, a collection of the sympathetic nerves located in the neck that helps regulate many involuntary functions such as heart rate, blood pressure and sweating.

For many years the Stellate Ganglion Block (SGB) has been recognised in Australia as an TGA approved pain-relieving treatment for conditions such as Complex-Regional Pain Syndrome or upper limb pain.

Most recently, this 30 minute  procedure has been used to treat symptoms of other autonomic dysfunction conditions such PTSD and anxiety because it helps regulate the brain's overactive sympathetic nervous system and "reset" the "fight-or-flight" response to its baseline.

What Stella’s Dual Sympathetic Reset (DSR) ?

Dr. Eugene Lipov, Stella's Chief Medical Officer, has showcased through his extensive research that trauma symptoms can be alleviated by targeting the sympathetic nervous system via the stellate ganglia bundle of nerves located in the neck. Most SGB treatments only use one injection, however Dr. Lipov pioneered an advanced SGB protocol known as the Dual Sympathetic Reset (DSR), that leverages two injections. Stella’s DSR SGB demonstrates remarkable efficacy via two injections on the one side of the neck to reduce or “tone down” PTSD/PTSI symptoms.

DSR SGB is one of the most promising interventions for psychological trauma. While studies show that the success rate of SGB treatment for PTSD symptoms average at 70%-75%, Stella's advanced DSR SGB protocol results in 81% of clients finding relief from their PTSD symptoms.

Citations
  1. Peterson K, Bourne D, Anderson J, et al. Evidence Brief: Effectiveness of Stellate Ganglion Block for Treatment of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) [Internet]. Washington (DC): Department of Veterans Affairs (US); 2017 Feb. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK442253/
  2. Lipov EG, Jacobs R, Springer S, Candido KD, Knezevic NN. Utility of Cervical Sympathetic Block in Treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Multiple Cohorts: A Retrospective Analysis. Pain Physician. 2022 Jan;25(1):77-85. PMID: 35051147. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35051147/
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Treat the Symptoms of Trauma by Regulating Overactive Nervous System

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Some individuals experience being stuck in a fight-or-flight response long after triggering traumatic or stressful events.

Stella's advanced protocol, the Dual Sympathetic Reset (DSR), is a two level Stellate Ganglion Block (SGB) injection of local anaesthetic on one side of the neck next to a bundle of sympathetic nerves that regulates the fight-or-flight response. Similar to turning on and off a computer, this helps restore normal biological function and has the potential to relieve symptoms of trauma, even at its most severe.

What might be happening with someone suffering with PTSD symptoms? This "overactive" state we talk about can create extra nerve fibers in the brain called sprouting, which produces persistent norepinephrine, known as adrenaline. Adrenaline is responsible for an overactive nervous system, causing increased heart rate and alertness, affecting sleep, mood, and memory – all physical symptoms of trauma.   

Stella's medical practitioners ( medical specialists) use image-guided techniques such as fluoroscopy, CT or ultrasound to perform the procedure and typically takes approximately 30 minutes. More information can be found on our FAQ page.

DSR SGB can have dramatic positive effects on a wide range of symptoms and autonomic dysfunction conditions.

SGB treats symptoms and conditions like:
Sleep disturbances  & nightmares
Numbness
Agoraphobia
Anxiety and panic attacks
Focus and concentration issues
Irritability
Hypervigilance
Sexual dysfunction
Isolation and avoidance
Depression
Intrusive thoughts & Memory loss