Agent Orange Disease
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Agent Orange disease is a result of exposure to the dioxin usually found in the herbicide. Dioxin, a highly toxic chemical, is not actually the active herbicidal component of Agent Orange, but frequently contaminates it. The disease may present no symptoms until many years after exposure to Agent Orange.
Agent Orange Conditions
No specific condition is considered the disease of Agent Orange. Rather, exposure can cause a cluster of diseases including cancers, liver disease, diseases of the immune and reproductive systems, and possibly even type 2 diabetes. The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs has compiled statistics on servicemen who toured Vietnam and found a strong link between Agent Orange and Hodgkin's disease, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, chronic lymphocytic leukemia, and multiple myeloma, along with other related cancers. Their statistics also support a preliminary conclusion of a linkage to diabetes, Parkinson's disease, and peripheral neuropathy. People suffering from peripheral neuropathy have widespread nerve damage throughout their bodies.
Health Conditions in Vietnam Veterans
Many years of legal and political controversy followed the emergence of health conditions in Vietnam veterans. For years, those suffering from exposure had little recourse in the face of official skepticism. By the early 1990s, however, the government had recognized the toxic effects on exposed troops. Today, comprehensive medical care is available to veterans suffering from Agent Orange disease.
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