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Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine:
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e3182570506
Original Articles

Prevalence of Environmental and Other Military Exposure Concerns in Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans

Quigley, Karen S. PhD; McAndrew, Lisa M. PhD; Almeida, Liliana MA; D'Andrea, Elizabeth A. PhD; Engel, Charles C. MD; Hamtil, Heather BA; Ackerman, Adam J. BS

Section Editor(s): Teichman, Ron MD, MPH; Guest Editor

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Abstract

Objective: This study examined the prevalence of self-reported exposures in returning Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF)/Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) veterans and the relationship of exposure reports to current physical symptoms.

Methods: Using self-reports obtained immediately after return from deployment in a cohort of 760 enlisted Army reserve component military personnel, we assessed prevalence rates of environmental and other exposures and the association of these exposures to severity of physical symptoms.

Results: Reporting of environmental exposures was relatively low in veterans of OEF/OIF, but reporting more environmental and other exposures, in particular screening positive for a traumatic brain injury, was related to greater physical symptom severity immediately after deployment.

Conclusions: Non–treatment-seeking, enlisted Army reserve component personnel reported relatively few exposures immediately after return from deployment; however, more exposures was modestly associated with greater severity of physical symptoms when controlling for predeployment symptoms, gender, and other deployment-related exposures.

©2012The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

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