Gulf War syndrome: an emerging threat or a piece of history?
- Publisher: Emerging Health Threats Journal
Emerging Health Threats Journal
(issn: 1752-8550, vol:
‘Gulf War syndrome’ is a phrase coined after the 1991 Gulf War to group together disparate, unexplained health symptoms in Gulf veterans. This paper examines the many hypotheses that have been put forward about the origins of the concept and gives an overview of the studies that have attempted to explain the lasting health effects associated with Gulf service. Our review finds that although in the UK there has not yet been evidence of a new Gulf War syndrome as a result of the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, there is a rise in post-conflict psychiatric disorders now being reported in the USA. We postulate that after conflicts military personnel will always face some form of post-conflict syndrome and the nature of the threats experienced is likely to dictate the form the syndrome might take. We also postulate that media reporting is likely to have influenced and to continue unhelpfully to influence the health of service personnel. (Published: 27 November 2008) Citation: Emerging Health Threats Journal 2008, 1:e10. doi: 10.3134/ehtj.08.010