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Am J Public Health. 2005 Aug;95(8):1382-8.

Mortality in US Army Gulf War veterans exposed to 1991 Khamisiyah chemical munitions destruction.

Author information

  • 1Department of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration, Mail Stop 135, Environmental Epidemiology Service, 810 Vermont Ave, Washington, DC 20420, USA. tim.bullman@hq.med.va.gov

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

We investigated whether US Army Gulf War veterans who were potentially exposed to nerve agents during the March 1991 weapons demolitions at Khamisiyah, Iraq, are at increased risk of cause-specific mortality.

METHODS:

The cause-specific mortality of 100487 exposed US Army Gulf War veterans was compared with that of 224980 unexposed US Army Gulf War veterans. Exposure was determined with the Department of Defense 2000 plume model. Relative risk estimates were derived from Cox proportional hazards models.

RESULTS:

The risks of most disease-related mortality were similar for exposed and unexposed veterans. However, exposed veterans had an increased risk of brain cancer deaths (relative risk [RR]=1.94; 95% confidence interval [CI]=1.12, 3.34). The risk of brain cancer death was larger among those exposed 2 or more days than those exposed 1 day when both were compared separately to all unexposed veterans (RR=3.26; 95% CI=1.33, 7.96; RR=1.72; 95% CI=0.95,3.10, respectively).

CONCLUSIONS:

Exposure to chemical munitions at Khamisiyah may be associated with an increased risk of brain cancer death. Additional research is required to confirm this finding.

PMID:
16043669
PMCID:
PMC1449370
DOI:
10.2105/AJPH.2004.045799
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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