For the United States, the 1991 Persian Gulf War was a brief and successful military operation with few injuries and deaths. However, soon after returning from duty, a large number of veterans began reporting health problems they believed were associated with their service in the Gulf. At the request of Congress, the IOM is conducting an ongoing review of the evidence to determine veterans' long-term health problems and what might be causing those problems. The fourth volume in the series, released in 2006, summarizes the long-term health problems seen in Gulf War veterans. In 2008, the IOM began an update to look at existing health problems and identify possible new ones, considering evidence collected since the initial summary. In this report, the IOM determines that Gulf War service causes post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and that service is associated with multisymptom illness; gastrointestinal disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome; alcohol and other substance abuse; and anxiety disorders and other psychiatric disorders.
To ensure that our veterans receive the best possible care, now and in the future, the government should continue to monitor their health and conduct research to identify the best treatments to assist Gulf War veterans still suffering from persistent, unexplained illnesses.
1 Front Matter; 2 SUMMARY; 3 1 INTRODUCTION; 4 2 CONSIDERATIONS IN IDENTIFYING AND EVALUATING THE LITERATURE; 5 3 MAJOR COHORT STUDIES; 6 4 HEALTH OUTCOMES; 7 5 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS; 8 APPENDIX A CHOLINESTERASE INHIBITORS AND MULITSYMPTOM ILLNESSES; 9 APPENDIX B COMMITTEE BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES; 10 INDEX