Institute of Medicine Releases a Report on Veterans and Agent Orange

This week, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) released its ninth report on the effects of Agent Orange on U.S. military personnel serving in Vietnam between 1962 and 1971.

Agent Orange, a herbicide, was frequently used during the Vietnam War to destroy the country’s jungle canopy in order to reveal opposition forces, destroy crops, and clear tall grasses and bushes from the perimeters of U.S. base camps and outlying fire-support bases. 

IOM’s Agent Orange reports were congressionally mandated through the Agent Orange Act of 1991 and serve to update veterans on the long-term effects of the herbicide.  The report specifically calls out Parkinson’s disease on pages 624-654 and its relation to the exposure to Agent Orange.

The report states that while epidemiological evidence supports the link between herbicide exposure and Parkinson’s disease, IOM calls for more studies into the link between Parkinson’s disease and Agent Orange exposure during the Vietnam War.

In 2010, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs recognized Parkinson’s disease as associated with exposure to Agent Orange or other herbicides during military service in Vietnam, allowing Vietnam veterans and their dependents to receive certain benefits.

Click here to download the full report.

Date originally posted: December 6, 2013.