by Derrek Asberry
Jun 7 2016
Hardie told the committee that 54,193 Gulf War syndrome claims had been filed with the VA as of March 2014. Of those claims, 42,977 of them, or four out of every five, were denied.
Within two minutes of answering his door and sitting down for an interview, Army veteran Justin Vosicky removed his shirt, revealing the feeding tubes he had placed in his abdomen in 2013.
Gulf War veteran Justin Vosicky talks about his struggles with the VA.Brad Nettles/Staff
“Sorry, I can’t stop sweating,” said Vosicky, who was also shivering repeatedly after taking enough medication to briefly stifle his abdominal pain.
Following a 10-year stint in the Army, from 2000 to 2010, Vosicky was told by VA doctors that he had Gulf War syndrome, a sickness that the VA prefers to call “chronic multisymptom illness” or “undiagnosed illnesses,” since any number of issues could be plaguing a patient.
The VA cannot pinpoint a cause of Gulf War Syndrome, which may afflict tens of thousands of veterans from both Gulf Wars. Outside theories include exposure to nerve gas, post-traumatic stress disorder and other psychiatric disorders.
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