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VA Cooperative Studies Program (CSP)

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Fort Devens Operation Desert Storm Reunion Survey

Main study:
Fort Devens Operation Desert Storm Reunion Survey 

Follow-up study:
Health Status of Persian Gulf War Veterans
 

Investigator Access
Fort Devens Operation Desert Storm Reunion Survey

What's available

Pending

Available documentation 

Pending

Dates data are available 

Pending

Access criteria

Pending

Study Characteristics
Fort Devens Operation Desert Storm Reunion Survey

Objectives

  1. To describe troop demographics of the Ft. Devens cohort of Persian Gulf War Veterans.
  2. To examine, both cross-sectionally and longitudinally, family and unit support factors, war-zone exposure, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and psychological distress symptomatology in these Veterans
  3. To examine physical health status at Time 2 and explore potential risk factors important in the development of adverse physical health after return from a wartime environment

Era of Service

Gulf War

Population

Male and female U.S. Army Active, Reserve and National Guard soldiers who were deployed to the Persian Gulf during the 1990–1991 conflict

Study Design 

Prospective cohort

Time Period 

Time 1: April – July 1991 (within 5 days of Veterans’ return following deployment)
Time 2: 1992 – 1993 (within 18-24 months of their return)

Setting

84 units returning from deployment to the Gulf War through Fort Devens, Massachusetts

Time 1: 2,949
Time 2: 2,313

Response Rate

Time 1: ~60%
Time 2: 79%

Recruitment Method

Participants were recruited during processing activities within the first five days of return from deployment, before they rejoined their families.

Compensation

None

Data Collected

  • Demographics
  • PTSD symptomatology
  • Psychological health
  • Physical health
  • Combat exposure
  • Change in work status
  • Current family and social functioning
  • Post-deployment major life stressors
  • Sexual harassment reported by the women surveyed

Data Collection Method

Self-report questionnaire, with a subset of 200 participants completing an in-depth, face-to-face evaluation

Funding Sources

  • Department of Veterans Affairs, Mental Health Strategic Healthcare Group at the National Center for PTSD (Boston)
  • Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Research and Development (ORD) to the Boston Environmental Hazards Center

Contact 

Pending

Selected Publications 

Rosenheck R, Becnel H, Blank AS, Farley F, Fontan A, Friedman MH, Fulton J, Gelsomino J, Grishman M, Gusman F, Keane T, Lehmann L, Podkul TB, Ursano RJ, Wolfe J. VA Persian Gulf Returnees Working Group. Returning Persian Gulf Troops: First Year Findings. 1992. VA Northeast Program Evaluation Center.

Wolfe J, Brown PJ, Kelley JM. Reassessing War Stress: Exposure and the Persian Gulf War. J Social Issues. 1993;49 (4):15-31.1

Wolfe J, Proctor SP, Davis JD, Borgos MS, Friedman MJ. Health symptoms reported by Persian Gulf War veterans two years after return. Am J Ind Med 1998;33:104-13.

Marshall G., Davis M., Sherbourne, C. “Stress Exposure in the Persian Gulf War.” In: A Review of the Scientific Literature as it Pertains to Gulf War Illnesses: Stress. The Gulf War series: Volume 4. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation, 2000, p. 17-36.1

More Information 

Main study website



 

Investigator Access
Health Status of Persian Gulf War Veterans

What's available

Pending

Available documentation 

Pending

Dates data are available 

Pending

Access criteria

Pending

Study Characteristics
Health Status of Persian Gulf War Veterans

Objectives

To re-examine overall adjustment with a special emphasis on physical health and psychological status and to evaluate cognitive functioning by neuropsychological test methods on a subset of the larger cohort

Era of Service

Gulf War

Population

Three cohorts of male and female Veterans:

  1. Ft. Devens cohort: US Army Active, Reserve, and National Guard Veterans who returned home through Ft. Devens, MA after deployment to the Gulf War
  2. New Orleans cohort: Active, Reserve, and National Guard, US Army, Navy, Marine, and Air Force troops deployed to the Gulf War
  3. Germany-deployed cohort (comparison group): A unit from an air ambulance company activated and sent overseas to Germany during the Gulf War from December 1990 – August 1991

Study Design 

Cross-sectional

Time Period 

Spring 1994 – Fall 1996

Setting

Three cohorts from units based in Ft. Devens, New Orleans, and Maine

Ft. Devens cohort: 220
New Orleans cohort: 73
Germany-deployed cohort (comparison group): 50

Response Rate

Ft. Devens cohort: 62%
New Orleans cohort: 38%
Germany-deployed cohort: 51%

Recruitment Method

Stratified, random samples of two cohorts of Gulf War Veterans were selected from larger cohorts being followed longitudinally following deployment to the Gulf War. Veterans were identified via Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC) and contacted by mail. 

Compensation

None

Data Collected

  • Demographics
  • Occupational and medical history
  • Psychological and physical health symptomatology (e.g., musculoskeletal symptoms, pulmonary symptoms, PTSD symptoms)
  • War zone exposure
  • Environmental exposures (e.g., anti-nerve gas pills, pesticides, smoke)
  • Smoking status

Data Collection Methods

  • Self-report questionnaires
  • Neuropsychological test battery
  • Environmental interview
  • Psychological diagnostic interviews

Funding Sources

  • Department of Veterans Affairs, Mental Health Strategic Healthcare Group at the National Center for PTSD (Boston)
  • Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Research and Development (ORD) to the Boston Environmental Hazards Center

Contact 

Pending

Selected Publications 

Proctor SP, Heeren T, White RF, Wolfe J, Borgos MS, Davis JD, Pepper L, Clapp R, Sutker PB, Vasterling JJ, Ozonoff D. Health status of Persian Gulf War Veterans: Self-reported symptoms, environmental exposures and the effect of stress. Int J Epidemiol. 1998;27(6):1000-10. 

Wolfe J, Proctor SP, Erickson DJ, Heeren T, Friedman MJ, Huang MT, Sutker PB, Vasterling JJ, White RF. Relationship of psychiatric status to Gulf War veterans' health problems. Psychosom Med. 1999 Jul-Aug;61(4):532-40.

Lindem K, Heeren T, White RF, Proctor SP, Krengel M, Vasterling J, Sutker PB, Wolfe J, Keane TM. Neuropsychological Performance in Gulf War Era Veterans: Traumatic Stress Symptomatology and Exposure to Chemical–Biological Warfare Agents. J Psychopathol Behav Assess. 2003;25(2):105-19.1

More Information 

None

 

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