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Congress approves $10 million for Gulf War illness research

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by Carrigon, Dec 18, 2011.

  1. Carrigon

    Carrigon Senior Member

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    http://www.usatoday.com/news/washin...ies (News - Top Stories)&utm_content=My Yahoo

    By Kelly Kennedy, USA TODAY


    WASHINGTON Congress has approved dedicating $10 million to research the mysterious Gulf War illness, ending concerns from veterans' groups that the money would disappear because of budget problems.

    The spending bill passed by the Senate on Saturday and signed by President Obama includes the money for specific research into the series of ailments suffered by veterans of the Persian Gulf War. Originally, money for the research would have to come from a larger pot of money that could have been spent on other work besides studying Gulf War illness.

    Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, led House efforts to restore the money. He told USA TODAY that sick veterans had called from their beds to ask members of Congress to approve the funding.

    "When one out of three who served is affected, and when some veterans' maladies are turning into long-term health problems like ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or Lou Gehrig's disease), and when researchers are getting closer every single year to finding a treatment with this program, there is an urgency," Kucinich said. "It's comparatively little money that is doing an extraordinary amount of good and is the best hope we have for them."

    About one in four Gulf War veterans have developed chronic headaches, widespread pain, memory and concentration problems, persistent fatigue, gastrointestinal problems, skin abnormalities and mood disturbances, said Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., who also pushed for the funding.

    The possibility of cuts came just as researchers in the peer-reviewed Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program had begun making progress on possible treatments.

    The research is different because it is not directed by the departments of Defense or Veterans Affairs. For years, Veterans Affairs focused its research on the mental health issues of Gulf War veterans, rather than assuming a physical cause, and the Defense Department stopped funding research on Gulf War research several years ago.

    Recent research suggests the cause may be the bug sprays, anti-nerve-agent pills and sarin gas troops were exposed to, and treatments targeting that possibility have shown promise. One study funded by the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program showed that coenzyme Q10 appeared to relieve some Gulf veterans' symptoms.

    "It's reassuring to see that members of Congress of both parties remain strongly committed to finding treatments for Gulf War illness, as the Institute of Medicine says can still likely be done with the right research," said Jim Binns, chairman of the federal Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses.
     
  2. Nielk

    Nielk

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    It's good to hear that they will receive funding for gulf War Veterans and it seems that this funding will concentrate on biological aspects as opposed to psychological-which is great but, 10 million dollars does not go too far. When you take into account how many are affected and these are people who served for our country, it's a pitiful amount. (imo)
     
    currer and *GG* like this.
  3. *GG*

    *GG* Senior Member

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    Good point Nielk!

    GG
     
  4. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    Very sad that they arent even looking after those who served the country. One in three/four, that rate is huge.
     
  5. Snow Leopard

    Snow Leopard Hibernating

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    Seems to be a replacement for the DoD research. $10mil is a good start, but I agree it is just that - a start.
     
  6. floydguy

    floydguy Senior Member

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    Interestingly, there are indications from some of the work done by Dr. Klimas and Dr. Broderick that I may fit in better with Gulf War Illness than ME - I have a more chemically oriented pathway dysfunction (hope to learn more soon). Yes, $10MM is a rather pathetic amount.
     
  7. Carrigon

    Carrigon Senior Member

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    There will always be a question of how many of us are actually civilians with Gulf War Syndrome. So many of us got sick right during those years. I hope we get answers someday.

    Ten mil is better than no mil. At least they made a public acknowledgment that Gulf War Syndrome is real and needs looking into. It's more than they do for CFIDS lately. But whatever benefits the GWS patients could potentially help us.
     
  8. Nielk

    Nielk

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    When I first became ill 10 years ago, I watched a documentary about Gulf War Syndrome. I couldn't believe what I was seeing! Everything that the mentioned were the symptoms that I was having. That's how I got to the realization that I might have CFS and went to a CFS specialist who diagnozed me with it.
    It is so similar that I wouldn't be surprised at all if both illnesses will have the same treatment as a cure.
     
  9. Enid

    Enid Senior Member

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    Good on you guys - it may be a small beginning but about time too !
     
  10. SilverbladeTE

    SilverbladeTE Senior Member

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    Somewhere near Glasgow, Scotland
    ...and surpise, surprise, Dr Weasel was involved with that too, oh I wonder why? What a coincidence!
     

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