Prospective assessment of chronic multisymptom Illness reporting possibly associated with open-air burn pit smoke exposure in Iraq

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To investigate the relationship between chronic multisymptom illness (CMI) and possible exposure to an open-air burn pit at three selected bases among those deployed to operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. METHODS: Chronic multisymptom illness (reporting at least one symptom in at least two of the following symptom constructs: general fatigue; mood and cognition problems; and musculoskeletal discomfort) was assessed, differentiating by potential burn pit exposure, among deployers who completed 2004 and 2007 Millennium Cohort questionnaires. RESULTS: More than 21,000 Cohort participants were deployed in support of the current operations, including more than 3000 participants with at least one deployment within a 3-mile radius of a documented burn pit. After adjusting for covariates, no elevated risk of CMI was observed among those exposed. CONCLUSIONS: There was no increase in CMI symptom reporting in those deployed to three selected bases with documented burn pits compared with other deployers. Copyright © 2012 by American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

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Powell, T. M., Smith, T. C., Jacobson, I. G., Boyko, E. J., Hooper, T. I., Gackstetter, G. D., … Smith, B. (2012). Prospective assessment of chronic multisymptom Illness reporting possibly associated with open-air burn pit smoke exposure in Iraq. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 54(6), 682–688. https://doi.org/10.1097/JOM.0b013e318255ba39

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