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Health and Human Services Department of Defense Veterans Affairs Health and Human Services Gulf War Information Department of Defense Gulf War Information Veterans Affairs Gulf War Information Home Home Advanced Search Glossary FAQs Site Map Contact Us
 Research Topics    |    Major Focus Areas
Research Topics
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General
Project Summary

Title: Combined Analysis of the VA and DoD Gulf War Clinical Registries: A Study of Clinical Findings from Systematic Medical Examinations of 100,000 U.S. Gulf War Veterans
Synopsis: This study will report on the combined analysis of two clinical registries on Gulf War veterans: the DoD's Comprehensive Clinical Evaluation Program and the VA's Gulf War Health Examination Registry.
Overall Project Objective: Merge two clinical data registries on Gulf War veterans (DoD's Comprehensive Clinical Evaluation Program (CCEP) and the VA's Gulf War Health Examination Registry) and use the combined database for analysis of health problems experienced by Gulf War veterans.
Status/Results to Date: Databases have been constituted and linked. In keeping with the study protocol, the VA Environmental Epidemiology Service (EES) has completed the linking of military and demographic data from: DMDC roster; clinical data from the DoD CCEP and the VA Gulf War Health Examination Registry (PGR); U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine (CHPPM) DMDC conflict file with UIC data; and, the DoD anthrax data file. Additionally, NHRC has linked exposure data, including Khamisiyah exposure estimates and oil well fire smoke exposure estimates calculated by CHPPM for unit and individual troop location data, to the Gulf War veterans master file (N=696,531). These data were then linked to the Standard Inpatient Data Record (SIDR) in order to attach associating DoD hospitalizations. Data were then transformed into an ASCII set and sent by NHRC to the VA. Because of privacy issues related to the sensitive nature of the data, an individual's SSN was replaced after VA linking, with a unique personal identification number (PIN) generated for each of the 1,136,077 persons identified by DMDC as individuals who have ever been deployed to the Gulf theater as of October 1999. This includes both "conflict" and theater" veterans. Furthermore, data have also been obtained from VA inpatient and outpatient records and VA Compensation and Pension records, which were linked with the registry databases. Univariate analyses were completed and tables have been generated describing demographic, military, and medical (both symptoms and diagnoses) characteristics of 49,079 veterans from the old VA PGR, 21,306 veterans on the new VA PGR, and 32,876 veterans on the DoD CCEP. After determining the likely influential variables, multivariable logistic regression was conducted to determine which variables were good predictors of registry participation, while adjusting for all other variables. Registry participation status was then stratified by CCEP participant only, VA Persian Gulf participant only, and a participant of both. A multivariate polychotomous logistic regression model was then run to assess differences stratified by participation status. These analyses are being summarized in a detailed monograph. Additionally NHRC has produced two working drafts, including one that uses time series analysis to report on the effect that news events have on participation in a registry and another that reports on the factors that contribute to participation in either registry.
Project:DoD-94
Agency:Department Of Defense
Location:Naval Medical Research Center (NMRC)
P.I. Name:Kenneth C Hyams, CAPT, USN
Research Type:Epidemiology
Research Focus:Symptoms & General Health
Focus Category:General Health & Physical Symptoms
Status:Ongoing
Study Start Date:January 10,2000
Estimated Completion Date:January 09,2002
Specific Aims: See objectives.
Methodology: Epidemiologic research.
Most Recent Publications:

Combined Analysis of the VA and DoD Gulf War Clinical Evaluation Programs: A Study of the Clinical Findings from Systematic Medical Examinations of 100,339 U.S. Gulf War Veterans. Department of Defense, Sep 2002. Report

Smith TC, Smith B, Ryan MA, Gray GC, Hooper TI, Heller JM, Dalager NA, Kang HK, Gackstetter GD. Ten years and 100,000 participants later: occupational and other factors influencing participation in US Gulf War health registries. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 44(8):758-768. Aug 2002. Abstract