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War Related Illness and Injury Study Center

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Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Veterans (Complex Exposures)

Complex Exposure Threats Center (CETC)

Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Specialist

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Service Members and Veterans have made a commitment to develop better ways to assess and understand their occupational health concerns. The EOD community and their stakeholders are critical partners of CETC and represent an ideal group to evaluates since they:

  • Often are the first Service Members to encounter new weapons (first users of hazardous systems).

  • Encounter multiple routes of exposure (i.e., dermal, inhalation, ingestion) via diverse exposure sources (i.e., Chemical/Biological/Radiological/ Nuclear (CBRN); Improvise Explosive Device (IED), unexploded ordnance (UXO) disposal).

  • Routinely experience repetitive combat and physical stressors (i.e., blast).

  • Are often engaged in high Operating tempo (OPTEMPO) missions and work in highly hazardous training environments (e.g., with higher frequency and dosages of hazardous exposures).

  • May have unique and detailed internal incident records of their occupational exposures.

CETC has a series of studies that builds directly on the WRIISC’s foundation as the only VHA program specializing in EOD Veterans. These studies integrate exposure interviews, home-based biomarker estimation, focus group assessment of exposures, field assessment of exposures using wearable sensors and other projects looking at the application of incident reports for exposure characterization.