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Daily News Archive
From April 17, 2001

Gulf War Vets Have Many More Health Problems

A Reuters News Service article reported that in a study of over 14,000 men and women, the 9,000 Gulf War veterans have more illnesses and health problems than their colleagues in the armed services. A direct correlation was also found between the symptoms experienced and the number of injections received and amount of time spent handling pesticides.

"There seems to be a definite shift towards ill health in those who went to the Gulf, with about 14 percent more than you would expect in the ill category," said Dr. Nicola Cherry, a specialist in occupational and environmental health. "There is strong evidence that people who went to the Gulf have had a change in their health in the wrong direction. They are less well than if they hadn't been (to the Gulf)."

Veterans who took part in the study answered questions about 95 symptoms. Nerve damage and widespread pain were twice as common among Gulf veterans than their colleagues. Skin and muscle complaints were associated with inoculations, with the number of inoculations or immunizations received by the veterans was proportional to their health problems. Veterans who handled pesticides also suffered more nerve damage.

Nearly one million servicemen and women were deployed to the Gulf between August 1990 and February 1991. Veterans started reporting health problems within months of returning.