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Re: Supplement plan - d-,l-phenylalanine?? Larry Hoover

Posted by pelorojo on December 5, 2002, at 17:30:42

In reply to Re: Supplement plan - d-,l-phenylalanine??, posted by Larry Hoover on December 5, 2002, at 13:41:45

The article below I was reading last night on the endorphin volatility in PTSD. This article is aimed at alcoholism and PTSD, however, it appears that non-alcoholic individuals with PTSD probably undergo the same volatility.

I have chronic, complex PTSD so this issue is particularly salient for me. The article discusses how implicit memories of the traumatic event can be triggered without the individual knowing it (traumatic reminders). Endorphin release follows that is nearly concurrent with the trigger (endorphins numb the pain of the trauma - but importantly they can also fog up one's memory). As the endorphins dissipate, withdrawal is experienced.

Other sources have speculated that this cycle is what underlies the reexperiencing symptom of PTSD. One is drawn to reexperience the trauma because the endorphin release is itself addictive and the withdrawal so uncomfortable. So to get more endorphins, individuals may be drawn to situations (or somehow create similar circumstances) to the 'original' or subsequent past trauma to trigger the release again. Even if you could break the reexperiencing cycle, the process would also be triggered by analogous situations the individual did not create as well (in other words, accidentally, as in hearing a car backfire if you had PTSD from explosions).

This makes intuitive sense to me because it maps well to the abstracted nature of my trauma.

If one aspect of PTSD can be seen as an endorphin rollercoaster then I'm not sure if an endorphin breakdown inhibitor is a good idea. But it might be a great idea. My brain begins to melt when I contemplate the complexity. I haven't read anywhere that it is contraindicated; I'm just wondering as I use DLPA myself and I definitely don't want to make my situation worse by accident. It feels good - but - so do other things that aren't good for me. In fact, the article speculates that an opioid blocker may be a useful treatment for both PTSD and alcoholism. If true, does it follow then that a chemical intervention (d-phenylalanine) that has the effect of raising opioid levels (by slowing their breakdown) is good? I suppose it could be because it could even out the peaks and valleys. But perhaps not because it might change receptor sensitivity? Blah blah blah. Sorry I get carried away.

Here's the link (note it's a PDF file):




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