Psychiatric diagnoses in Gulf War veterans with fatiguing illness – Chronic Fatigue Syndrome related research

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The purpose of this study was to determine whether Gulf War

Illness (GWI) can be explained by the presence of psychiatric

disorders as assessed by DSM-III-R. To reduce the

heterogeneity amongst Persian Gulf War veterans with GWI

(PGV-F), only those were studied who presented with severe

fatigue as a major complaint and also fulfilled clinical case

definitions for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Idiopathic Chronic

Fatigue, and/or Multiple Chemical Sensitivity. A total of 95

Registry PGVs were examined; 53 presented with GWI and 42 did

not report any post-war health problems (PGV-H). All subjects

were assessed for the presence of DSM-III-R Axis I psychiatric

disorders. Compared to PGV-Hs, 49% of PGV-Fs had similar

post-war psychiatric profiles: either no, or only one,

psychiatric disorder was diagnosed. Psychiatric profiles of

the remaining 51% of PGV-Fs were significantly different from

PGV-Hs in that most of these veterans suffered from multiple

post-war psychiatric diagnoses. The presence of psychiatric

disorders as assessed by DSM-III-R criteria cannot explain

symptoms of Gulf War Illness among all Persian Gulf veterans

with severe fatiguing illness.

Lange G, Tiersky L, DeLuca J, Peckerman A, Pollet C, Policastro T,

Scharer J, Ottenweller JE, Fiedler N, Natelson BH

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