information presented here offers background for the reader and offers context for members of the IOM committee.

This appendix updates a previous chapter on Gulf War illnesses contained in the first volume (IOM, 2000). Some studies of Gulf War veterans covered here are also discussed more thoroughly in the body of this volume because they are relevant to understanding the health effects of insecticides and solvents. There, they are incorporated into the body of evidence evaluated by the committee to reach its conclusions about the health effects of insecticides and solvents.

REGISTRY PROGRAMS

Some 700,000 US servicemen and servicewomen were deployed in the Gulf War in 1990 and 1991 (PAC, 1996). The demographic composition of the deployment was more diverse than that of previous deployments; there were greater racial and ethnic diversity, more women, and more reserves and National Guard troops (Table A.1).

TABLE A.1 Demographic Characteristics of US Gulf War Troops

Characteristic

Percentage of Troopsa

Sex

Male

93

Female

7

Age (mean) in 1991 (years)

27

Race or ethnicity

Non-Hispanic/White

70

Black

23

Hispanic

5

Other

2

Rank

Enlisted

90

Officer

10

Military branch

Army

50

Navy

23

Marines

15

Air Force

12

Military Status

Active DutyReserves or

83

National Guard

17

SOURCE: Joseph, 1997

aTotal about 697,000 US military personnel.

Soon after the war ended in 1991, veterans began to seek medical treatment for a variety of symptoms and illnesses (PAC, 1996). DOD and VA responded to veterans’ health concerns by establishing programs for veterans to voluntarily receive clinical examinations largely for diagnostic purposes. By 1994, those registry programs had been revised and renamed the Comprehensive Clinical Evaluation Program (hereinafter called the DOD registry) and the Persian Gulf Registry and Uniform Case Assessment Protocol (hereinafter called the VA registry). The programs are similarly structured. They begin with an initial physical examination, including patient and exposure history and screening laboratory tests, which are followed by an opportunity for referral to more-specialized testing and



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement