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Posted: 8/31/2001 5:04:50 AM EDT
Friday August 31 4:05 AM ET British Vets Report Gulf War Health Problems By Patricia Reaney LONDON (Reuters) - Seventeen percent of British Gulf War (news - web sites) veterans believe they are suffering from Gulf War Syndrome (news - web sites), a mysterious illness blamed for a range of symptoms linked to the 1991 conflict in Kuwait. If a survey of nearly 3,000 veterans, by researchers at Guy's, King's and St. Thomas's School of Medicine in London, is representative of the 53,000 British forces who served in the Gulf, about 9,000 men and women think they have the condition. ``Substantial numbers of British Gulf War veterans believe they have Gulf War Syndrome, which is associated with psychological distress, a high number of symptoms, and some reduction in activity levels,'' said Dr. Trudie Chalder, lead researcher of the study, published in the British Medical Journal. Chalder and her colleagues found that veterans who thought they had the illness had poorer health and were distressed, tired and more likely to have suffered from post-traumatic stress than other veterans. ``It (the study) is in keeping with the other major epidemiological studies that have been performed in the U.S. in that they find there is a high incidence of reporting of these symptoms and conditions,'' Catherine Unwin, an epidemiologist who worked on the study, said in an interview. The National Gulf Veterans and Families Association criticized the research, saying it had no real medical significance, and reiterated calls for a public inquiry into the illnesses suffered by its members. ``For many years Gulf War veterans have been asking for a public inquiry into their illnesses from the war in 90/91. This has been denied to us,'' the group said in a statement. SYNDROME HOTLY DEBATED Gulf War Syndrome includes a variety of symptoms such as respiratory and digestive problems, nerve damage, pain, numbness, tiredness and psychological difficulties. There is still no consensus on the validity of Gulf War Syndrome, and its possible causes have been hotly debated. It has been linked variously to the inoculations the veterans received, pesticides they handled, smoke from oil-burning fires, stress and organophosphates -- chemicals that have been shown to affect the human nervous system. Last month Britain's Ministry of Defense said tests on a group of British Gulf War veteran failed to show any trace of the syndrome. UK Veterans' Minister Lewis Moonie said the lack of evidence was in line with previous research findings. In the study, the researchers said the strongest factor associated with the belief that a veteran had the syndrome was knowing another person who had the condition. ``Veterans who have symptoms believe they have Gulf War Syndrome because the most likely explanation for the symptoms stems from something they have in common -- their active service,'' Chalder said in the report.
Link Posted: 8/31/2001 5:17:26 AM EDT
I wonder if the British troops took the same anti-biological agent vaccines that the US troops took? I've always thought that these vaccines may have been the culprit in the Gulf War illness syndrome. Eric The(WerWeiss?)Hun[>]:)]
Link Posted: 9/1/2001 8:02:24 AM EDT
I have often wondered how many other people from our "International Forces" had turned up with these Health Problems. And as Eric points out if it wasn't contributed to by the Inoculations we received. Thanks Rich.
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