French study finds against Gulf War Syndrome

13th July 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, July 13 (AFP) - French researchers have concluded that there is no "specific" illness that can be called Gulf War Syndrome, the man who led the study said Tuesday after releasing his report to the defence ministry.

PARIS, July 13 (AFP) - French researchers have concluded that there is no "specific" illness that can be called Gulf War Syndrome, the man who led the study said Tuesday after releasing his report to the defence ministry.  

"The results of the inquiry did not demonstrate the existence of a specific Gulf syndrome, a finding that is in line with most studies conducted abroad," wrote Roger Salamon, a director at the National Institute for Health and Medical Research (INSERM).  

"We must nevertheless report that only a quarter of the subjects concerned participated in the study," Salomon, who led a research team in Bordeaux, wrote in the synopsis of the report released to the media.  

Of 20,261 French veterans of the first Gulf War contacted by INSERM, about 10,500 responded and 5,666 participated in the inquiry.  

"Gulf War Syndrome" is a term popularly applied to a vast range of symptoms among veterans of the 1990-91 conflict in Iraq, from memory loss, chronic fatigue and dizziness to swollen joints, depression and lack of concentration.  

About 100,000 US troops as well as thousands of British, Canadian and French troops who took part in the operation against Baghdad to liberate Kuwait have reported one or more of these problems.  

The results of the INSERM study revealed that 14 percent of respondents suffered from respiratory illnesses and 13 percent had vision problems.  

Of the French veterans who participated in the study, 83 percent said they suffered from headaches at least once a month, 71 percent had trouble sleeping and 63 percent had back problems.  

Several explanations for the syndrome, ranging from exposure to depleted uranium in artillery shells to vaccines and poison gas antidotes, have been put forward.  

A French association for Gulf War victims, Avigolfe, says that six French veterans have died from Gulf War illnesses since the end of the conflict.

 

© AFP

 

Subject: French news

 

 

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