Women Veteran Cohort Study (WVCS) - VA Cooperative Studies Program (CSP)
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VA Cooperative Studies Program (CSP)


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Women Veteran Cohort Study (WVCS)


Data Sharing Statement

What's available?


Available Documentation 


Dates Data are Available 


Access Criteria 


Study Characteristics


  • Primary objective: Identify important factors of gender associated disparities in VA health care utilization and outcomes among Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF), Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), Operation New Dawn (OND) Veterans
  • Long-range goal: Develop a greater understanding of the impact of military service on women's lives to improve preventive and overall VA healthcare delivery 

Era of Service

Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF)
Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF)
Operation New Dawn (OND)


Male and female Veterans who participated in OEF, OIF, or OND

Study Design 

Two-phase prospective cohort study

Time Period 

November 2007 - October 2012


  • Initial survey: 693
  • Follow up 1: 522
  • Follow up 2: 214

Response Rate

776 enrolled, 89% completed initial survey

Recruitment Method    

All women and an equal number of randomly selected men who were residents of Indiana or New England and served in OEF/OIF/OND were mailed surveys. Surveys were sent up to 3 times for those who didn't respond. 



Data Collected

  • Demographics
  • Combat exposure
  • Trauma
  • Pain
  • Social support
  • Health status
  • Reproductive health
  • Health habits
  • Healthcare practices and utilization of healthcare services

Data Collection Methods

  • Baseline web-based survey
  • Electronic health records & clinical progress notes from one year prior to survey completion

Funding Source

VA Health Services Research & Development (HSR&D), Grant # DHI 07-065, PI: Brandt 



Selected Publications

Burg MM, Brandt C, Buta E, Schwartz J, Bathulapalli H, Dziura J, Edmondson DE, Haskell S. Risk for Incident Hypertension Associated With Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in Military Veterans and the Effect of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Treatment. Psychosomatic medicine. 2017 Feb 1; 79(2):181-188.

Higgins DM, Kerns RD, Brandt CA, Haskell SG, Bathulapalli H, Gilliam W, Goulet JL. Persistent pain and comorbidity among Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom/operation New Dawn veterans. Pain medicine (Malden, Mass.). 2014 May 1; 15(5):782-90.

Seng EK, Driscoll MA, Brandt CA, Bathulapalli H, Goulet J, Silliker N, Kerns RD, Haskell SG. Prescription headache medication in OEF/OIF veterans: results from the Women Veterans Cohort Study. Headache. 2013 Sep 1; 53(8):1312-22.

Cobb SJ, Pietrzak RH, Southwick SM, et al. Military sexual trauma interacts with combat exposure to increase risk for posttraumatic stress symptomatology in female Iraq and Afghanistan veterans. J Clin Psychiatry. Jun 2014; 75(6):637-43.

More Information

Women Veterans Cohort Study summary