Just another Reality-based bubble in the foam of the multiverse.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Maybe if we close our eyes it will just go away...

WASHINGTON - There is no such thing as Gulf War syndrome, even though U.S. and foreign veterans of the war report more symptoms of illness than do soldiers who didn't serve there, a federally funded study concludes.

U.S. and foreign veterans of the Gulf War do suffer from an array of very real problems, according to the Veterans Administration-sponsored report released Tuesday.

Yet there is no one complex of symptoms to suggest those veterans - nearly 30 percent of all those who served - suffered or still suffer from a single identifiable syndrome.

"There's no unique pattern of symptoms. Every pattern identified in Gulf War veterans also seems to exist in other veterans, though it is important to note the symptom rate is higher, and it is a serious issue," said Dr. Lynn Goldman, of Johns Hopkins University, who headed the Institute of Medicine committee that prepared the report...

This despite the VA recognition that Gulf War Syndrome presents with...manifestations of an undiagnosed illness:

* fatigue
* skin disorders
* headaches
* muscle pain
* joint pain
* neurologic symptoms
* neuropsychological symptoms
* symptoms involving the respiratory system
* sleep disturbances
* gastrointestinal symptoms
* cardiovascular symptoms
* abnormal weight loss
* menstrual disorders

While these categories represent the sign and symptoms frequently noted in VA's experiences to date, other signs and symptoms also could qualify for compensation. A disability is considered chronic if it has existed for at least six months. The VA operates a toll-free hotline at 800-749-8387 to inform Persian Gulf War veterans about VA programs, their benefits and the latest information on Persian Gulf benefits.

Who is Dr. Lynn Goldman?

Dr. Goldman was trained as a pediatrician who turned to public health policy. She has published mostly in pediatric environmental health. Unlike most of the scientists I'm familiar with, her funding sources aren't too transparent, coming from groups like "Project on Scientific Knowledge and Public Policy" and not the National Institutes of Health like us pedestrian wet biochemists. While she's Professor and Chair of the Interdepartmental Program in Applied Public Health at Johns Hopkins, somehow she seems a bit out of her element investigating an adult syndrome among soldiers that someone like Rumsfeld claims doesn't exist.

Because, you know, Somebody makes one hell of a lot of money out of recycling depleted uranium into munitions the D.o'D. buys at top dollar.

She also has a lot of publications (check them out on the link above) recently saying genetically modified corn- corn modified to express insecticides and herbicides, not more nutrients- is, you know, harmless.

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