Agent Orange: Research on health effects of Agent Orange exposure

By STARS AND STRIPES Published: January 14, 2011

Dioxin is a highly toxic substance found in Agent Orange and some other herbicides.  Studies suggest that this chemical may be related to a number of cancers and other health effects in humans.

VA and other Federal government Departments and agencies have and continue to conduct extensive research evaluating the health effects of Agent Orange exposure on U.S. Veterans.

Below are links to ongoing and published research studies:

You also may want to conduct an extensive search on Agent Orange through the U.S. National Institutes of Health's PubMed.*

VA Environmental Epidemiology Service Research on Vietnam Veterans

VA’s Environmental Epidemiology Service (EES), a research division of the Office of Public Health and Environmental Hazards, assesses health concerns of Veterans who were potentially exposed to environmental hazards during military service. EES conducts original studies and maintains databases and registries of Veterans’ exposures and health care utilization, which provide unique data for much of the research.

Learn about:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Studies on Vietnam Veterans

In 1984, the CDC published an important study, partially funded by VA, regarding Vietnam Veterans’ risks of fathering babies with birth defects.

VA also funded the CDC Vietnam Experience Study* published in 1987 and 1988, and the CDC Selected Cancers Study* published in 1990.

Institute of Medicine Committee Reports on Vietnam Veterans and Agent Orange

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences, a non-governmental organization, evaluates all relevant scientific literature and provides advice to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs on health effects of Agent Orange and other herbicides used in Vietnam.

Every two years the IOM updates its reports on Veterans and Agent Orange*†, which includes a review and evaluation of the available scientific evidence regarding the statistical association between exposure to dioxin or to the herbicides used in Vietnam and various adverse health outcomes. The review builds on past reports, but focuses on scientific studies and other information developed since the release of past reports. The committee released the eighth biennial update in 2009.

Information provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs


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