Agent Orange Exposure Claims of C-123 Veterans
VA reverses denial of benefits for veteran in Agent Orange-related case C-123
Breaking News: Long Awaited Dioxins Report Revealed
EPAs Reanalysis of Key Issues Related to Dioxin Toxicity and Response to NAS Comments, Volume 1
The American People’s Dioxin Report
Service connection for bladder cancer, as due to Agent Orange exposure and/or diesel fuel exposure, is granted.
Exposure to Agent Orange by Location
Click here to see herbicide spraying locations between 1963 and 1970
Vietnam the Secert Agent
Agent Orange is recognized as the most toxic man-made chemical. We dumped it on Vietnam and we dumped it on the dusty backroads of Southern Missouri.
Vietnam: The Secret Agent is the first comprehensive look at the history, the effects and the implications of the deadly contaminant 2,4,5-T — a main ingredient of the defoliant code-named Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. Using rare archival and striking war footage in support of interviews with veterans, scientists, attorneys and representatives of the U.S. Air Force, the VA and Dow Chemical — this film documents the history of chemical warfare and the plight of our Vietnam vets.
Every issue raised in the film continues to resonate in today’s political climate. As soldiers return from Iraq and Afghanistan, plagued by illness, disability and post-traumatic stress, as Americans — particularly students — question political decisions, it’s critical to learn from past conflicts.
This award winning 1984 documentary classic, re-released on DVD, is loaded with new bonus interviews: class action update, eye witness accounts from Vietnam, dioxin problem solving, U.S. veterans today, and more.
ATSDR (Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry). 1998.
Toxicological profile for chlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (Update). US
Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service.
Atlanta, Georgia. 678 p. with appendices.
ATSDR (Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry). 1997.
Interim Policy Guideline: Dioxin and Dioxin-like compounds in soil.
US Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service.
Dioxins and Health. Arnold Schecter (ed.). New York, NY: Plenum
Press, 1994. ISBN: 0-306-44785-1.
Dioxin and its Analogues, Joint Report No. 4. Academie Des Sciences –
CADAS. Paris: Technique & Documentation – Lavoisier, 1995. ISBN: 2-
Harvest of Death. J.B. Neilands, G.H. Orians, E.W. Pfeiffer, A.
Vennema, and A.H. Westing. New York, NY: The Free Press, 1972.
Library of Congress Number: 72-143521.
Herbicidal Warfare: The RANCH HAND Project in Vietnam. Paul F.
Cecil. New York, NY: Praeger Publishers, 1986. ISBN: 0-275-92007-0.
My Father, My Son. E. Zumwalt Jr., E. Zumwalt III, and J. Pekkanen.
New York, NY: Macmillan Publishing Co., 1986. ISBN: 0-02-633630-8.
The Wages of War: When American Soldiers Came Home – From Valley
Forge to Vietnam. R. Severo and L. Milford. New York, NY: Simon &
Schuster Inc., 1989. ISBN: 0-671-54325-3.
The Withering Rain. Thomas Whiteside. New York, NY: E.P. Dutton &
Co. Inc., 1971. Library of Congress Number: 77-148477.
After Tet: The Bloodiest Year in Viet Nam. Ronald H. Spector. The
Free Press, New York. 1993. ISBN: 0-02-930380-X
In Retrospect – The Tragedy and Lessons of Viet Nam. Robert S.
McNamara. Random House, New York. 1995. ISBN: 0-8129-2523-8.
Veterans and Agent Orange. Committee to Review the Health Effects in
Vietnam Veterans of Exposure to Herbicides, Division of Health
Promotion and Disease Prevention, Institute of Medicine. Washington,
D.C.: National Academy Press,
1994. ISBN: 0-309-04887-7.
1996 Update: ISBN: 0-309-05487-7.
1998 Update: ISBN: 0-309-06326-4.
2000 Update: ISBN: 0-309-07552-1.
VIETNAM: A History. Stanley Karnow. New York, NY: The Viking Press,
1983. ISBN: 0-670-74604-5.
Hamburger Hill. Samuel Zaffiri. Presido Press, Norato, Ca. 1988. New
edition printed 2000. ISBN: 0-89141-289-1.
WHO/EURO. 1998a. WHO Revises the Tolerable Daily Intake (TDI) for
dioxins. World Health Organization European Centre for Environment
and Health; International Programme on Chemical Safety.
Organohalogen Compounds 38: 295-298.
WHO/EURO. 1998b. Assessment of the Health Risk of Dioxins: Re-
evaluation of the Tolerable Daily Intake (TDI). World Health
Organization, European Centre for Environment and Health;
International Programme on Chemical Safety. WHO Consultation, May 25-
29, 1998, Geneva, Switzerland.
WHO/EURO. 1991. Consultation on Tolerable Daily Intake from Food of
PCDDs and PCDFs, Bilthoven, Netherlands, 4-7 December 1990. Region
Office for Europe Summary Report. EUR/ICP/PCS 030(S)0369n. World
Health Organization Regional Office for Europe, Copenhagen.
WHO/EURO. 1989. Levels of PCBs, PCDDS and PCDFs in Breast Milk:
Results of WHO-coordinated interlaboratory quality control studies
and analytical field studies (Yrjanhaiki, EJ, ed).
Environmental Health Series Report #34.
Copenhagen: World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe.
WHO/EURO. 1988. PCBs, PCDDs and PCDFs in Breast Milk:
Assessment of health risks (Grandjean, P et al., eds.).
Environmental Health Series Report #29. Copenhagen:
World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe.
Australian Vietnam Veterans Study
This 1997 study of 50,000 Australian Viet Nam veterans
entitled “Mortality of Vietnam Veterans: The Veteran Cohort Study”
found that the death rate among veterans between 1980 and 1994 was
some seven percent higher than for the overall male population. In
addition, the study found that the death rate from cancer was about
20 percent above average, and that veterans may face an increased
risk of death by suicide. The Australian government received this
information seriously since it has been documented that those
individuals who were in Viet Nam had successfully passed rigid
medical examinations and were therefore considered
“healthy”; those with congenital medical issues were rejected as
Agent Orange Presumptive List Expanded
Pursuant to the Agent Orange Act of 1991, the VA entered into an agreement with the
National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to review the scientific associations between
exposure to herbicides during the Vietnam War and diseases suspected to result from
such exposure. NAS submits reports on its activities every two years.
The law also provides that when, based on sound medical and scientific evidence, the VA
determines that a positive association exists (i.e., the credible evidence for the association
is equal to or outweighs the credible evidence against the association), the VA will publish
regulations establishing presumptive service connection for that disease, (i.e., the
veteran will not have to provide medical evidence of a relationship between exposure and
the subsequent onset of the disease in question). The Secretary’s determination must be
based on a consideration of the NAS reports and all other available sound medical and
scientific information and analysis.
Between July 1993 and April 2001, the VA issued regulations that established
presumptive service connection for several diseases for Vietnam veterans. These include:
chloracne, Type II diabetes mellitus, Hodgkin’s disease, multiple myeloma, non-Hodgkin’s
lymphoma, acute and subacute peripheral neuropathy, porphyria cutanea tarda, prostate
cancer, respiratory cancers (cancer of the lung, bronchus, larynx, or trachea), and certain
soft-tissue sarcomas. If a veteran who was exposed to an herbicidal agent in service
subsequently develops one of the presumptive diseases, the VA will presume that the
disease was caused by the exposure to that herbicide for purposes of granting serviceconnected
In each of its four previous biennial reports, the NAS determined that there was
“inadequate/insufficient” evidence to determine an association between exposure to an
herbicide agent and the development of leukemia. Following the 2001 NAS report, the VA
asked NAS to review the possible association between exposure to Agent Orange and a
particular form of leukemia, chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). In its 2002 update, NAS
concluded that there is sufficient evidence of such an association. After considering all of
the evidence, VA Secretary Principi determined that there is a positive credible association
between exposure to herbicides used in Vietnam and the subsequent Occurrence of CLL
and that a presumption of service connection for CLL is warranted.
Consequently, on March 26 the VA published a proposed regulation to add CCL to the list
of presumptively service-connected diseases incurred as the result of exposure to
herbicides used in the Vietnam War. Interested organizations and individuals have until
late May to provide their comments on the proposed regulation. The VA will then consider
all of the comments received and issue a final regulation.
USE OF AGENT ORANGE OUTSIDE OF VIETNAM
The VA has announced that the Defense of Department (DoD) has released a list of
locations outside of Vietnam where Agent Orange was used or tested over a number of
years. The listings are mostly Army records, although there are a limited number of Navy
and Air Force records. These listings relate only to chemical efficacy testing and/or
operational testing. The records, however, do not refer to the use of Agent Orange or
other chemicals in routine base maintenance activities, such as spraying along railroad
tracks, weed control on rifle ranges, etc. The VA has been advised that information on
such use does not exist.
The VA does have significant information regarding Agent Orange use in Korea along the
demilitarized zone (DMZ). DoD has confirmed that Agent Orange was used from April 1968
through July 1969 along the DMZ. The military defoliated the fields of fire between the
front-line defensive positions and the south-barrier fence. The size of the treated area was
a strip of land 151 miles long and up to 350 yards wide from the fence to north of the
“civilian control line.” There are no records that reflect spraying within the DMZ itself.
Agent Orange and other herbicides were applied through hand spraying and by hand
distribution of pelletized herbicides. Although restrictions limited the potential for spray
drift, run-off, and crop damage, records indicate that effects of spraying were sometimes
observed as far as 200 meters down wind.
Units in the area during the period of use of herbicide include: the four combat brigades of
the 2nd Infantry Division (1-38 Infantry, 2-38 Infantry, 1-23 Infantry, 2-23 Infantry, 3-23
Infantry, 3-32 Infantry, 109th Infantry, 209th Infantry, 1-72 Armor, 2-72 Armor, 4-7th
Cavalry); and 3rd Brigade of the 7th. Infantry Division (1-17th Infantry, 2-17th Infantry, 1-73
Armor, 2-10th Cavalry). Field Artillery, Signal, and Engineer troops were supplied as
support personnel as required. The estimated total number of exposed personnel is
For purposes of claims for service connection, if a veteran is determined to have been
exposed to Agent Orange in Korea or in other recognized areas (e.g., Panama), then the
presumption of service connection for the listed diseases applies.
Special Compensation for 10 Diseases: As with veterans of any period, Vietnam veterans
with disabilities arising during or aggravated by military service may receive monthly VA
compensation. As knowledge has grown from studies of Agent Orange, some latent
diseases that may not have become evident in service have been recognized
presumptively. Based on clinical research, 10 such diseases are now on the presumptive
list: chloracne, Hodgkin’s disease, multiple myeloma, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, porphyria
cutanea tarda, respiratory cancers (lung, bronchus, larynx and trachea), soft-tissue
sarcoma, acute and subacute peripheral neuropathy, prostate cancer and spina bifida.
Compensation, health care and vocation rehabilitation services are provided to Vietnam
veterans’ offspring with spina bifida, a congenital birth defect of the spine. Vietnam
veterans are not required to prove exposure to Agent Orange; VA presumes that all
military personnel who served in Vietnam were exposed to Agent Orange.