United States military veterans know what it means to take a risk, serving our country in the face of significant danger. Yet, they might not know about the potential prospect of developing lung diseases like asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), bronchiectasis, and bronchiolitis following overseas deployment. This combination of illnesses, called “War Lung Disease,” is a prevalent topic among members of our armed forces, both active and veteran.

The long-term effects of duty abroad are consistently being studied. However, it has become common knowledge that soldiers who were previously deployed in Afghanistan and Iraq show a higher likelihood of developing respiratory diseases. Various exposures contribute to conditions that affect the airway and lungs of deployed soldiers. These elements include airborne toxins, dust, paint fume chemicals, debris caused by explosive devices, and pollution from open-air burns. Military personnel have been known to burn objects such as medical waste and plastic water bottles which emit hazardous fumes into the air. In turn, these men and women of service unknowingly receive the dangerous toxins into their lungs.

Regardless of how breathing issues were contracted, being proactive about initial health concerns is always crucial. As active-duty military or as a retired veteran, knowing that this detrimental illness exists might sharpen your awareness of the symptoms. Problems such as shortness of breath could represent several possibilities, which means it can take doctors longer to properly diagnose deployment-related ailments. Other indicators of potential War Lung Disease include chest pain, coughing, and irregular breathing. At the absolute first sign of breathing-related trouble, it is time to reach out to a healthcare professional.

Because the symptoms of War Lung Disease might easily be misdiagnosed or attributed to other conditions, it is important to discuss your deployment and its possible relation to your illness with your doctor. Usually, a lung biopsy is required for diagnosing the disease properly.

The experts at Veteran Health Services Group offer demonstrated experience testing for and treating War Lung Disease. We know that you are familiar with risk, but we can help you establish a plan to ensure that you live the highest quality of life despite the diagnosis. If you were exposed to any of the elements listed above while in Afghanistan or Iraq and you have faced any breathing-related issues, please call us at 833-218-2792 to learn more about potential treatment.



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Happy Veterans Day from Everyone at VHSVG