C&EN logo The Newsmagazine of the Chemical World
Home Current Issue ChemJobs Join ACS
Latest News
Government & Policy
Careers and Employment
ACS News
How to log in
Contact Us
Site Map
About C&EN
About the Magazine
How to Subscribe
How to Advertise

Latest News RSS Feed

latest news RSS feedWhat is this?

Join ACS
Join ACS
  Latest News  
  January 3, 2005
Volume 83, Number 01
p. 8


  Environmental Risks To Gulf Veterans

An Institute of Medicine (IOM) review has concluded that veterans of the 1991 Persian Gulf War may have an increased risk of lung cancer because of war-related exposures to air pollution, vehicle exhaust, and other combustible products.

IOM committee chair Lynn R. Goldman, professor at the Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, says the IOM review "provides sufficient evidence that exposure to combustion products during the Gulf War could be associated with lung cancer in some veterans."

For other illnesses and conditions, the committee found only limited or insufficient evidence of increased health risks. This finding applies to oral, nasal, and bladder cancers; to asthma; and to low birth weight and preterm births by women who were exposed while pregnant.

The committee reviewed 800 studies, yet found scant information about actual exposure levels of pollutants to service members, an issue that prevented the committee from drawing specific conclusions about health problems veterans might experience. There was no systematic monitoring during the war of air contamination from oil-well fires and from other combustion sources, such as heaters or engines. And there are no data allowing comparisons between exposure to air contaminated during the Gulf War and to air with similar contamination in civilian settings.

This is the third study by IOM of health issues for Gulf War veterans. The complete report can be found on the Web at http://www.nap.edu/catalog/11180.html.

  Chemical & Engineering News
ISSN 0009-2347
Copyright © 2005

E-mail this article
to a friend
Print this article
  E-mail the editor