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Vietnam Era Health Retrospective Observational Study

The Vietnam Era Health Retrospective Observational Study (VE-HEROeS) is a nationwide study designed to assess the current health and well-being of Vietnam Veterans, Blue Water Navy Veterans, and Veterans who served elsewhere during the Vietnam Era (1961–1975). This study is comparing the health of these Veterans to similarly aged U.S. residents who never served in the military.

Researchers are looking closely at neurologic conditions and hepatitis C infection as a part of this study.

Researchers are currently analyzing data from this study.

Methods

Researchers invited participants to complete a questionniare.  They are now analyzing data from returned questionnaires, and they are also conducting a medical records review for a smaller group of participants. The VE-HEROeS questionnaire includes the following topics:

  • Military  service: service experience, combat experience, chemical and other exposures, re-entry into civilian life, or no military service
  • General health: neurologic conditions, infections, presumptive conditions, cancer, hypertension, posttraumatic stress disorder, and depression
  • Aging: memory, reasoning, and limitations
  • Lifestyle: tobacco use, health care use, living arrangements, and health experiences of descendants

Participant Selection

VA invited approximately 43,000 Vietnam and Vietnam Era Veterans, and approximately 11,000 members of the general population to participate in VE-HEROeS. These individuals were scientifically selected from the Veteran community and U.S. population to represent others with similar characteristics. Because each selected individual represents other comparable people, we were not able to accept volunteers for this study.

Investigators

  • Victoria Davey, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.N.
  • Robert Bossarte, Ph.D.
  • Yasmin Cypel, Ph.D., M.S.
  • Erin Dursa, Ph.D., M.P.H.
  • Erick Ishii, Ph.D.
  • Sybil Wojcio Morley, M.P.H.
  • Aaron Schneiderman, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.N.

VE-HEROeS is also guided by a steering committee of Vietnam Veterans and family members, Veteran Service Organization representatives, survey experts, clinicians, and VA staff, along with additional consultants as needed.