Skip to comments.Rare pneumonia found among U.S. soldiers in Iraq
Posted on 12/21/2004 12:09:33 PM PST by jdm
CHICAGO, Dec 21 (Reuters) - A rare and sometimes deadly pneumonia has hit 18 U.S. soldiers deployed in Iraq, and Army medical investigators are at a loss to explain the cause, according to a study published on Tuesday.
In a report appearing in the Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers from the Walter Reed Army Medical Center said two of the soldiers had died from the rare illness, called acute eosinophilic pneumonia, or AEP.
No common source was found for the outbreak that occurred between March 2003 and March 2004 among the soldiers in Iraq. The study covered only that time period and there was no indication whether cases have continued to show up since then.
The 18 victims studied ranged in age from 19 to 47 and all used tobacco, with three-quarters recently taking up the habit. All but one reported "significant exposure to fine airborne sand or dust" while in Iraq.
While only 18 cases have been reported among 183,000 troops deployed in Iraq during the time period involved, the authors said the cases are still significant because the disease is very rare in the general population.
The illness was not immediately diagnosed in several victims, who suffered fever and respiratory failure. Several had to be put on mechanical ventilators to help them breathe and were administered corticosteroids. Months later, a few reported continued breathing problems or wheezing.
"Inquiries to the Iraqi health officials did not suggest that AEP was occurring in the local population or that there has been an unusual increase in the incidence of pneumonia of any kind during the study period," the report said.
(Excerpt) Read more at cnn.netscape.cnn.com ...
I'll say the obvious...Bio-weapon?
I bet they all voted for Bush too. Nonetheless this is clearly, "BUSH'S FAULT". /s
Yeah, but to have such a small affect group is kinda of wierd... usually a bio weapon will show a pattern of covering an area and having both civillian an military affected... even if the Iraqi health ministry did not report any cases, I would still think that we would see a larger outbreak among the military population.. at least more then 18 people affected.... sounds wierd...
the only exception I could think of to the bio weapon scenario is if it was introduce in either food or water... but I though that pneumonia was pretty much an airborne agent.
I would be interested in knowing how many of these folks were involved in the destruction of captured enemy ordinance.
I've been watching CNN since they started. They have no point now except to try and catch Fox and they are failing miserably.
More asbestos miners that smoked got lung cancer than those that didn't. Alone, smoking or exposure to asbestos does not always cause major problems. Mix 'em and it almost always guarantees problems.
The use of tobacco by all 18 soldiers is useful information. Was it all the same brand or lot? Was the shipment of the tobacco mishandled? Is there a bacteria that likes products of combustion. Grilled steak?Researchers will look into all the commonalities.
Yeah.. that was my other thought too, but then again if it were an airborne agent once those shells were destroyed I would imagine one of two scenarios occuring...
1.) when the shells were destroyed they would have been bundled together and laced with c4 and det cord... in the ensuing explosion and fireball I think any of the airborne virus or agent would have been consumed or sterilized by the fireball and heat created by the explosion.
2.) If there were a release of an agent into the air after destruction, I would think it would affect others in the geographical area...but that could vary based on weather conditions humidity etc...
Excellent point though.
There is a connection to smoking and getting pneumonia. But it is strange of the Left Wing Media to mention it. There is some truth in what they say
.........'WMD'..........Iran-North Korean tobacco?
.........'WMD'..........Iraqi-Iran-North Korean Tobacco Company?
I think you may be exactly right.
The best explanation for the first Gulf War Syndrome was that a combination of factors, each perhaps benign taken in isolation, caused the problem.
I bet this is a similar effect.
It is a little eiry though. In the first GW, we were medevacing about 1-3 people per day from Kuwait from pneumonia , and that was just in our batallion. These were young kids, too, in great shape.
At the time we thought it was due to the oil well fires... but you never know.
I doubt the media pointed that out on their own, they are not that bright. It was probably listed in the report as the only significant common factor. In fact, its odd the report mentions nothing else these guys had in common except the sand storm. Were they in the road during the storm in the attack phase, were they in the same unit in the same area? Were they eating the same batch of MREs? Did they get water from the same place?
The report is amazeingly vague, which suggests its either poorly done, or there is no THERE THERE, or that they are saying more than they know.
The MSM would be loath to admit the presence of WMD such as gas or bio weapons....
Doubtful. There are all kinds of strange diseases floating around third world countries that our doctors have forgotten even existed.
More info at link above. Never trust MSM to get anything right about anything.
Don't our troups use depleted uranium as weapons... I hope that is'nt the cause?
Some ordnance, and some armor is made of DU!
What can occur when that stuff goes up in flames......the military isn't telling, so far.
I wonder if these soldiers were buying cigs from the Iraqis...The troops have been ordered not to buy from them...my hubby caught several of his troopers doing this at the fence of his base and confiscated them....
That's probably the cause. A bedouin sneezes on one of our guys, and it could cause an epidemic.
May I gently point out that the story is one year old?