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Thread: Exposure to radiation and biochemical weapons?

  1. #1
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    Exposure to radiation and biochemical weapons?

    I spent the first 5 years of my life at Dugway Proving grounds in Utah. Now 64 and health deteriorating due to auto immune problems.
    Dugway is a Department of Defense base where they created and tested all forms of Biological warfare.
    I was also downwind from the nuclear testing in Nevada and they did radiation experiments at Dugway.
    We lived on base and all test were conducted outdoors. (Yeah how dumb can they be?)

    I feel this exposure has caused a lot of my health problems and my possible thyroid cancer and a mass in my throat and neck.
    Anyone here have a similiar experience and do you attribute your cancer to your exposure?

    RC

  2. #2
    Dear CowboyRog: My condolences for your health problems, but what MAY have happened in the distant past can NEVER be proven. All the time you spend looking for this link, no matter how probable it may be, and no matter how careless the idiots running Dugway were, is time wasted and gone forever. In particular, the Army is known best for lying about why a bunch of cattle died a long time ago, and then 40 years later the Army finally fesses up and admits what everybody knew from Day 1, which is that a batch of nerve gas got loose and killed all the cows.

    I have terminal AML, one of the suspected causes is benzene, and in 1967-68 I was an undergraduate organic chemistry major. Back then nobody had the slightest clue that these solvents could be carcinogenic, and on a couple of occasions I washed some sticky gook off my hands with benzene. If anybody is the poster boy for proving benzene causes AML, it's me, but this information is irrelevant, and I'm not going to waste any time on it at all. Like everybody else here, you have an illness that may be life threatening, and your ONLY priority is to get a good diagnosis of what is wrong NOW, and get the best treatment you can.
    To perform a "thought experiment", if the Army were to confess and provide a signed document that stated that they had knowingly exposed people to carcinogenic substances, how would that affect your current situation? Maybe it was the chemicals, and maybe it was just the luck of the draw that you got cancer and other people didn't.

    Get a good doctor, get a good diagnosis, and get good treatment for the problems you have TODAY. When you have cancer, asking why is a waste of time.

  3. #3
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    Sorry for your AML, hope you are doing as well as possible fighting it.Very good points. I agree with you but I have a different reason for looking at the past. I am not looking for myself to "hang" a cause on all my health problems as much as trying to establish a link so that we do not allow this to happen in the future to others. I have only found on other person from Dugway and he was a mess health wise. Lost one lung, numerous immune diseases etc.
    He was stationed there an it took him years to get disability. These things should not happen and if we educate others it will help future generations.
    I also think of the others whose families suffered financially due to their health problems associated with nuclear fallout. They should be compensated and the government should come clean and do what is right.
    RC

  4. #4
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    Hi Cowboy. I apologize for not noticing your post sooner. Since it sounds like you haven't yet been diagnosed with cancer, I've moved your post to the "worried" forum.

    Thyroid cancer is one of the most survivable of cancers, at any rate; the prognosis is usually very good.

    Thyroid cancer is also, as you probably know, one of the cancers specifically designated as compensable for Downwinders. For those who aren't aware of this, more info is here:

    https://www.hrsa.gov/gethealthcare/c...wnwinders.html

    Also, for those not aware, Downwinders are people who lived in the vicinity of nuclear test sites and were exposed to radiation by aboveground nuclear testing before it was banned in 1963. Downwinders are recognized by the US government as being more susceptible to certain cancers because of their exposure to radiation.
    Last edited by GBMsibling; 06-12-2017 at 06:59 PM.

  5. #5
    Administrator Top User Kermica's Avatar
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    Hi Cowboy and welcome, though I am sorry you have reason to be here. Were you civilian DoD or regular Army at Dugway? It could make a difference in how you proceed to get facts, recognition and/or possibly compensation as a result of your service. Here is another link from Health.mil regarding Dugway that you may find useful if you haven't already seen it. https://health.mil/Military-Health-T...Proving-Ground

    DMW, I wish I could agree with your position but can't. If it were not for the thousands of vets who have pressed the VA on numerous issues from intentional syphilis exposure to Agent Orange to Gulf War toxin exposure (to name just a few) literally millions of people who gave service would not now be receiving well deserved compensation for their illnesses. Personally, I am prequalified for comp due to chemical exposure while at Camp LeJeune, NC and am still fighting (with many others) to have Thailand Vietnam era vets like myself get recognized for their exposure to AO as boots on the ground in Vietnam and Blue Water vets have already done.

    Yes, of curse, if diagnosed, get the best treatment from the best care team you can find. That said, do not give up your search for a cause, especially if it involves the government. Dugway is a known exposure point for many an if you can prove you were there you may well have a case. Good luck to you.

    Good health,

    kermica
    When the world says, "Give up," Hope whispers, "Try it one more time."
    ~Author Unknown

    Age 67
    Follicular lymphoma diagnosed August 08, Stage 1
    2 cycles (20 treatments each) localized radiation to tumor sites. Remission confirmed July 09
    Restaged to Stage 3 May 2010
    Recurrence confirmed May 2010 - Watch and Wait commenced - multiple scans with minimal progression.
    Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma diagnosed September 2012. Mohs surgical excision 09/2012. Successful, clean edges all around.
    Significant progression detected in PET scan - December 2012
    Biopsy to check for transformation 1/18/2013 - negative for that but full of lymphoma, of course.
    July 2013 - Rescan due to progression shows one tumor (among many) very suspect for transformation, another biopsy 8/12/13.
    August 2013 - No evidence of transformation, 6 courses of B+R commence 8/29 due to "extensive, systemic disease".
    February 2014 - Diagnostic PET scan states: Negative PET scan. Previous noted hypermetabolic cervical, axillary, iliac and inguinal lymphadenopathy has resolved. Doctor confirms full remission.
    June 2014 - started 2 year maintenance Rituxan, 1 infusion every 3 months. Doctor confirms lump under right arm are "suspicious" for recurrent disease, deferring scans for now.
    February 2015 - Doc and I agreed to stop R maintenance as it is depressing my immune system too much.
    June 2015 - Confirm that the beast is back by physical exam, will scan in August after esophageal issues settle down so we can get a clear view.
    August 2015 - physical exam in error, PET/CT shows no evidence of disease. Remission continues well into second year!
    December 2015 - Cardiologist tells me I have plaque buildup growing at an alarming rate. Stent or bypass down the road but not yet...
    March 2016 - new tumor below the jaw so remission is over. Back to active surveillance until treatment is needed.
    June 2016 - C/T scan indicates presence of multiple lesions in iliac chain.
    August 2016 - PET/CT shows multiple areas of lymphoma as expected plus new areas of concern in bowel.
    January 2017 - C/T scan shows significant progression in cervical and inguinal lymph chains, largest tumor is impacting hearing, measures 2.1x4.6 cm. 4 to 8 cycles of R-CVP, 1x3weeks to commence 2/6/17.
    April 2017 - Mid treatment scan shows about 1/3 reduction in multiple tumors. Also shows abdominal aortic aneurysm with peripheral thrombus. Cardiologist changed meds, spoke of need for surgical repair down the road.
    September 2017 - finished 10 rounds of R-CP, V was stopped due to neuropathy in feet. No further treatment planned at this time, at least 10 tumors can be felt which seem to be growing again.
    December 2017 - Biopsy of external iliac node with SUV of 13.1 shows no transformation! However, the FL grade is now 3A instead of Gr 1-2. Will start indefinite protocol using Copanlisib, one of the new targeted therapies. I remain hopeful.
    March 2018 - Copanlisib failed, treatment stopped 3/28. New plan is to go to Dana Farber on 4/16 for case review and treatment recommendation.

    May 2018 - did not qualify for clinical trials at Dana Farber. Tumors need to get larger to be considered. On consultation w/Dr. Armand at DF and my onc, have decided to take a break from cancer treatments. Will have a biopsy of the mass in my sinus discovered in scan at DF and to get the aneurysm repaired as it has developed a potentially catastrophic penetrating ulcer. Surgery scheduled for 7/12.

    September 2018 - biopsy of mass in nose shows transformed DLBCL throughout. Assessing options for this negative development.

    October 2018 - started 6 to 8 cycles of R-CHOP. Goal is to get to full remission to open up other options.

    February/March 2019 - PET shows four hot spots following R-CHOP. referred to Dana Farber for stem cell transplant. Pre testing all good, accepted for Auto Transplant. Will begin inpatient process about April 1.

  6. #6
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    Sounds like he was a Downwinder... one of the civilians that lived on farm and ranch land downwind from the above ground testing that was done 1945-1963; those people were exposed to fallout.

    I read once that the government even encouraged families to come outdoors and watch the tests from their yards.

  7. #7
    Administrator Top User Kermica's Avatar
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    i just reread the post and you are correct, GBM. Hopefully, your link to him can provide some useful guidance.

    Good health,

    kermica

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Kermica View Post
    Hi Cowboy and welcome, though I am sorry you have reason to be here. Were you civilian DoD or regular Army at Dugway? It could make a difference in how you proceed to get facts, recognition and/or possibly compensation as a result of your service. Here is another link from Health.mil regarding Dugway that you may find useful if you haven't already seen it. https://health.mil/Military-Health-T...Proving-Ground

    DMW, I wish I could agree with your position but can't. If it were not for the thousands of vets who have pressed the VA on numerous issues from intentional syphilis exposure to Agent Orange to Gulf War toxin exposure (to name just a few) literally millions of people who gave service would not now be receiving well deserved compensation for their illnesses. Personally, I am prequalified for comp due to chemical exposure while at Camp LeJeune, NC and am still fighting (with many others) to have Thailand Vietnam era vets like myself get recognized for their exposure to AO as boots on the ground in Vietnam and Blue Water vets have already done.

    Yes, of curse, if diagnosed, get the best treatment from the best care team you can find. That said, do not give up your search for a cause, especially if it involves the government. Dugway is a known exposure point for many an if you can prove you were there you may well have a case. Good luck to you.

    Good health,

    kermica
    Dear Kermica: Thank you for the correction!! I had no idea about downwinder compensation or classification, or for chemical exposure at Camp Lejeune. All I remember is the asinine denial behavior and stonewalling of the Federal government for 4 decades, and the disgraceful treatment of vets by the VA over the last decade. I figured that it would be a cold day in hell before anybody from the 70's got a fair shake on what happened to them. As such, I'm grateful that I was wrong about this!!

 

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