Matthew Farwell fought for several years with the US Army in Afghanistan. His experiences there left him suffering for 7 years from a severe Post-Traumatic-Stress injury which left him angry, unstable, violent, and suicidal. Through the Veterans Administration Matt got both pyschotherapy and medication, but neither seemed to work.
He was for years a man whose anger could fly out of control in an instant and turn him violent and unreasonable. He was jailed and hospitalized. He emerged more or less functional, in the everyday business sense, but still unhappy, edgy, and destructive to himself and those he cared about.
Then he heard about the stellate ganglion block treatment done by Dr. Eugene Lipov, a Ukrainian-born Chicago-based anesthesiologist.
From his first day of treatment, a shot in the neck that shut down a collection of nerves with connections to the brain, everything in his life improved. That was in 2014, and since then Matt’s become a writer, published in Playboy and in Vanity Fair’s HIVE section. He’s working on a book.
Today Matt and I are going to talk about his experiences, how he got clinically overstressed, how it affected him, about the treatments offered by the VA, and about Dr. Lipov’s so-called “God shot,” and its effects.
But we’re also going to talk about the context from which his injury and his various treatments spring, about the effects of more than 15 years of unending warfare on the US military’s combat forces, and on the institutions, like the VA, which are supposed to serve them.
Matthew Farwell served with the U.S. Army in Afghanistan. He suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Injury and was treated with psychotherapy and medications, but without much success. Then he underwent Stellate Ganglion Block treatment with Dr. Eugene Lipov, a Ukrainian-born, Chicago-based anesthesiologist and his life turned around.
Now he is a successful journalist and writer published by Playboy and in the HIV section of vanityfair.com, and working on a book.