2/94th Battalion Update Number 49
I believe all the Battalion Updates are posted now at:
Battalion Reunion 2007-2008
I have no new information as of yet for the 2008 reunion – other than the survey I posted.
Charles Stephenson is cranking out the history updates and is well on the way to the final chapters. After his completed all of it then I will convert to the format we are using and then go back through it one more time with his help. The process requires we convert then go through it one more time before posting.
We should be able to have this done by the next reunion and in some form that everyone can have a copy. Not sure what that will be yet.
Since my posting of what I am going to present at the Disability Commission, I have had e-mails of great value to this on-going fight.
I had quite sending out e-mails to the Battalion on AO, as I discussed before, on my fight for ALL our guys and offspring with possible HERBICIDE DAMAGES.
This was in part due to some not wanting to read the data and only wanting to hear Battalion News.
That was a mistake on my part I realize now.
In trying not to alienate anyone I have, with good intentions at least, deprived some of you with some valuable information to themselves as well as their children and grandchildren.
My policy from now on will be to send out the same data I send out to the AO groups and you can choose to read it or not. I hesitate on this but in my opinion, all of you need to keep abreast of what we are finding and reporting. These are not just some subjective opinions but evidence of findings as well as how it might apply to you and more importantly your doctors.
I will be sending out an update of links for you to review that I have not sent to you before. There maybe a few redundant but in my opinion you need to be in the loop.
If it offends a few than I apologize up front but this is too important to all - not to be in the communications and data loop.
We had another member diagnosed with prostate cancer this past week. You fellows need to keep on top of this and talking with other veterans is the best way - VA outreach is garbage and minimal at best.
Copy of IOM presentation in early June to the Disability Commission
Hi to all,
Been working on my appeal some and down some so those that have been asking that is why nothing new.
Below is a link I posted on the IOM presentation in early June to the Disability Commission.
This pretty much confirms my initial report of the IOM slamming the VA and its internal processes hard.
Now what does that mean to us in the fight?
Probably not much since our own congress cannot get the VA to do what is right nor do they seemed to give a damn.
I will leave it to you to review the recommendations and see how credible they are and if you think it will be anything but business as usual at the VA and its White House after White House puppet secretaries; lies, denials, and then more lies.
It will be interesting to see what IOM presents at the July Disability Commission on presumptive disorders and how it applies to public law and the categories contained in the law by definition. Since they are our appointed judge and jury we shall see if it even comes close to what the law says and then what the “infamous Secretaries of Veterans Affairs” is supposed to do with the recommendation.
I hope to get a few questions up with the concurrence of Paul and Mike on how this applies to the Commission before the date if I have time. I do not think the Commission has any idea of what questions to ask nor the history - no matter what is presented by IOM.
Here is another prime example of government/VA/IOM propaganda. MSNBC in the link below states no cancers found in AO study. This was put out nationally by the Associated Press and everyone picked up on it. All of it on cancers - nothing but a government lie and congress lets it go on like nothing happened.
As you recall a posting of other media reports, were the main DOD scientists for 14 years of the study said the study was totally flawed because of cohort assumptions and when recalculating the statistics the actual finding was a two-fold increase in cancers was found. Along with another, two term committee scientists indicating that is all cancer sites not just the few the VA and IOM has acknowledged.
For your review, again I posted the real concerns and outcomes at:
I think you will find that the lead scientists for the DOD Ranch Hand Study admit the study is junk.
I was going through the transcripts today for my appeal and found that statement in transcripts once again about the increase in cardiovascular issues of which they knew in 1991 there was a significant increase. That along with VA’s Dr. Kang’s new study pretty much concludes the same thing and still our congress does nothing to stop the VA lies not only in this medical disorder but others that were found by Dr. Kang as well as associated to herbicides and/or service in Vietnam such as Hepatitis.
AP, MSNBC, and the national media can put out this White House/VA Bull out like it was fact. I will say it again - this sounds like Germany circa 1939, nothing but government propaganda.
Significant findings to herbicides by lead VA scientist:
COPD all lung issues except cancers
Current health is poor
Current health limits the type and amount of work
DNA STRAND DAMAGE LINKS
Actual Published Study = http://www.2ndbattalion94thartillery.com/Chas/NZDNA.pdf
Let’s analyze the data, VA, and NAS statements. Let’s pick one we have not really talked about much before such as Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH).
Add new finding on PC that demonstrates cancer processes not just some single ICD code.
Agent Orange Raises Vietnam Vets' Risk of Recurrent Prostate Cancer
By E.J. Mundell
HealthDay ReporterSun May 20, 7:01 PM ET
SUNDAY, May 20 (HealthDay News) -- Exposure four decades ago to Agent Orange in the Vietnam War appears to boost veterans' risk for a recurrence of prostate cancer even after the organ is surgically removed, a new study shows.
And if the cancer does return, it tends to be more aggressive among veterans exposed to Agent Orange than in those not exposed to the chemical defoliant, the researchers found.
Black veterans are especially vulnerable to these tough-to-treat recurrences, the researchers said.
"This means that we need to make sure that these patients are not lost to follow-up, that their PSAs [prostate specific antigen levels] are checked regularly and that Vietnam veterans are screened aggressively for prostate cancer," said lead researcher Dr. Sagar Shah, a urology resident physician at the Medical College of Georgia. "The quicker that we catch [a recurrence], the more treatment options we have."
Shah's team was to present its findings Sunday at the annual meeting of the American Urological Association, in Anaheim, Calif.
Agent Orange was used to clear dense jungle cover during the Vietnam War. It contains dioxin, which, Shah said, "isn't really a tumor mutagen -- it doesn't cause cancer -- but it is a tumor-promoter. So, if the cancer is there, it makes it more prominent."
Exposure to dioxin and Agent Orange has long been linked to increased risks for a variety of malignancies, including leukemias, lymphomas, prostate cancer and lung tumors, according to Phil Kraft, program director for the National Veterans Services Fund, which lobbies on behalf of U.S. veterans. "Agent Orange -- and its bad-guy ingredient, dioxin -- affects everyone who is exposed genetically," he said.
In the new study, Shah's team sought to determine if there were any differences in the rate or type of prostate cancer recurrences seen among a group of 1,653 black and white Vietnam veterans -- 199 of whom had been exposed to Agent Orange. All of the veterans were treated after first being diagnosed with prostate cancer between 1990 and 2006. Their treatment included surgical removal of the prostate gland.
Examination of biopsy samples under a microscope showed no pathological differences between the tumors of men exposed to Agent Orange and those who were not exposed, Shah said. Differences did emerge, however, when the researchers compared rates of "biochemical recurrence."
Biochemical recurrence means that blood levels of the marker prostate-specific antigen -- produced by prostate cancer cells -- rose sharply and steadily in the months after surgery. Doctors routinely test men for their blood levels of PSA to help spot prostate cancer.
In this study, the shorter the time it took for a man's PSA level to double, the more aggressive his cancer appeared to be, Shah explained.
Veterans exposed to Agent Orange "had a higher relative risk of having a biochemical recurrence" than unexposed veterans, Shah said.
The rate of post-surgical prostate cancer recurrence among white veterans rose by 42 percent if they had been exposed to Agent Orange, compared to non-exposed veterans, the researchers found. Black veterans exposed to the herbicide fared even less well, with a recurrence rate that was 75 percent higher than their non-exposed peers.
And when prostate cancer did recur among veterans exposed to Agent Orange, "it seemed that they had a much shorter PSA doubling time, a surrogate for aggressiveness," Shah said.
Among black men with a cancer recurrence, PSA levels doubled in just nine months for those exposed to Agent Orange, compared to 16 months for those unexposed to the toxin.
Why might black Vietnam veterans be most vulnerable? Numerous studies conducted among the general population have already suggested that genetics or other factors put black American men at higher prostate cancer risk compared to whites.
In addition, black troops serving in Vietnam "were also more likely to have higher levels of exposure than whites," Shah noted. "They were more likely to be ground troops and less likely to be officers away from Agent Orange exposure," he said.
What does it all mean in terms of veteran's health? "When you are counseling patients on their treatment options, this is something that you can make them aware of -- that this puts you at higher risk for a recurrence," Shah said.
Shah stressed that the study did not look at recurrence rates for prostate cancer patients treated with methods other than surgery -- for example, with radiation. "We just don't know about those outcomes," he said.
"However, if he has surgery, the patient and I need to be on the same page, and I need to say, 'You have to make sure that you come in for your regular PSA test,' " Shah said. "We really have to be aware of this."
Kraft agreed that veterans' health deserves closer scrutiny, and he said that the experiences of the men and women who served in Vietnam have much to teach today's physicians and policymakers. "We are the guys who are learning the lessons," said Kraft, himself a Vietnam veteran. "We hope we're passing that knowledge on to the Persian Gulf, Iraqi Freedom and Afghanistan veterans."
To the Veterans Disability Commission:
ATTN Mr. Wilburn
In accordance with the provisions below:
“Interested parties may also provide written statements for review by the Commission prior to the meeting, by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail to Mr. Ray Wilburn, Executive Director, Veterans’ Disability Benefits Commission, 1101 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20004.”
I am requesting that you provision the commissioners with either a copy of the below link or a copy of the attached word file. The link and the word file document concerns, issues, and questions that the Disability Commission should be aware in hopes they will ask the appropriate questions of the IOM committee on Presumptive Disorder IOM defacto Legal Decisions for hundreds of thousands of Veterans, as it applies to the laws of our nation and those uncompensated/untreated suffering herbicide Veterans, as well as their offspring.
I also request that this submittal be included "for the record" in the Commission archives.
In the past, certain commissioners have asked me directly to provide them with specific data. I have sent that requested data through your liaison efforts. When the commissioners were asked later if they got the requested data the answer was no.
Either the commissioners are not being up front or your process of getting issues/concerns to the Commission for review is not functioning as advertised.
In accordance with the provisions below:
“Interested persons may attend and present oral statements to the Commission on July 18. Oral presentations will be limited to five minutes or less, depending on the number of participants.”
I am requesting a five-minute time to present an oral summary to the commission.
I am also requesting a five-minute time for my wife Glenda Kelley to present to the commission and request that these two time slots run in series.
Thank you very much,