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Health Assessment of Gulf War Veterans from Iowa


Investigator Access 

What's Available

Check with the study contact and publications for information on a public dataset, data archive, data enclave, or website where data might be available.

Available Documentation 

Dates Data are Available

Access Criteria 

Study Characteristics


To assess the prevalence of self-reported symptoms and illnesses among military personnel deployed during the Persian Gulf War (PGW) and to compare the prevalence of these conditions with the prevalence among military personnel on active duty at the same time, but not deployed to the Persian Gulf War (non-PGW)

Era of Service

Gulf War 


Subjects were randomly selected from 1 of 4 study domains (PGW regular military, PGW National Guard/Reserve, non-PGW regular military, and non-PGW National Guard/Reserve), stratifying for age, sex, race, rank, and branch of military service.

Study Design

Cross-sectional survey

Time Period

September 1995 - May 1996




Selected: 4,886

Response Rate

Located participants: 91%
Eligible study participants:

Recruitment Method

The Defense Manpower Data Center identified demographic and military information for 29,010 military personnel potentially eligible participants. A stratified random sample was conducted to determine final sample. Three commercial services were used to identify current addresses and telephone numbers for study participants. Introductory letters and information summaries were mailed. Within 5 to 7 days of the mailing, a call was made to the subjects to explain the study, obtain consent, and conduct the introductory telephone interview.



Data Collected

  • Basic demographic information
  • Self-reported symptoms
  • Symptoms of medical illnesses
  • Psychiatric conditions

Data Collection Method

Telephone survey

Funding Sources

  • Iowa Department of Public Health
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Center for Environmental Health


Principle Investigator: David A. Schwartz, MD, MPH;  

Selected Publications

Iowa Persian Gulf Study Group. Self-reported illness and health status among Gulf War veterans: A population-based study. Journal of the American Medical Association 1997;277:238–45.

Black DW, Doebbeling BN, Voelker MD, Clarke WR, Woolson RF, Barrett DH, Schwartz DA. Quality of life and health-services utilization in a population-based sample of military personnel reporting multiple chemical sensitivities. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 1999;41:928–33.

Black DW, Doebbeling BN, Voelker MD, Clarke WR, Woolson RF, Barrett DH, Schwartz DA. Multiple chemical sensitivity syndrome: Symptom prevalence and risk factors in a military population. Archives of Internal Medicine 2000;160:1169-76.

Doebbeling BN, Clarke WR, Watson D, Torner JC, Woolson RF, Voelker MD, Barrett DH, Schwartz DA. Is there a Persian Gulf War syndrome? Evidence from a large population-based survey of veterans and nondeployed controls. American Journal of Medicine 2000;108:695–704.

More Information

Study website