Gulf War Syndrome

Gulf War Syndrome: Infectious Diseases and Undiagnosed and Multi-symptom Illnesses

Because significant numbers of Gulf War veterans have been and continue to endure from conditions which the medical community has yet to fully understand, veterans who served in the Southwest Asia theater of military operations during the first Gulf War or in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn are entitled to disability compensation from the VA for “certain diagnosed and undiagnosed disorder or for presumptive disorders, despite the fact that these disorders did not become manifest during qualifying service.”

These conditions, which are described below, currently have no official cause, though there is widespread speculation that toxic exposure and medical vaccinations may be two of the main causes.

Eligibility for VA Disability Benefits due to Gulf War Syndrome

According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, a veteran is eligible for veterans disability compensation for Gulf War Syndrome if all of the following requirements are met:

1. The diagnosed or undiagnosed conditions must appear either during active duty or prior to December 31, 2016 to a degree of 10 percent or more.
2. Your condition must have lasted for 6 months or more.
3. There must be no other cause for your condition than service in the Southwest Asia theater of military operations, which includes the following areas: Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the neutral zone between Iraq and Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, the U.A.E., Oman, Gulf of Aden, and the Gulf of Oman; the waters of the Persian Gulf, the Arabian Sea, and the Red Sea; and the airspace above these locations. Times of service in these locations are as follows: August 2, 1990 (the beginning of the first Gulf War) through 2011 (Operation New Dawn).
4. Your condition must be an undiagnosed illness, a multi-symptom illness (functional gastrointestinal disorders, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, etc.) or a Presumptive Disorder (list below).

Undiagnosed Illnesses

The following symptoms, together without medical explanation, are commonly referred to as Gulf War Syndrome and are eligible for presumptive service connection: abnormal weight loss, fatigue, cardiovascular disease, muscle and joint pain, headache, menstrual disorders, neurological and psychological problems, skin conditions, respiratory disorders, and sleep disturbances.

Multi-Symptom Illnesses

Multi-Symptom illnesses are as follows: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, and a set of conditions referred to as Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders. These include irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), functional dyspepsia, functional vomiting, functional constipation, functional bloating, functional abdominal pain syndrome, and functional dysphagia.

Presumptive Disorders

These disorders are considered by the VA to have been incurred in or worsened by military service: Burcellosis, Campylobacter jejuni, Coxiella burnetii (Q fever), Malaria, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Nontyphoid Salmonella, Shigella, Visceral leishmaniasis, and West Nile Virus.

Please note that with the exception of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, there are time limits by which all of these conditions must manifest.

Contact Us

If you or a loved one served in the military and are now suffering from Gulf War Syndrome, please do not hesitate to contact our office for a free consultation. Call us at 800-742-5035 or use the contact form on this site.