Dysregulation of the Stress Response in the Persian Gulf Syndrome.
Annual rept. 6 May 96-5 May 97,
GEORGETOWN UNIV WASHINGTON DC MEDICAL CENTER
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The overall project objective is to demonstrate that the unexplained symptoms seen in individuals who have returned from the Gulf War are due to the same mechanisms that cause these symptoms in individuals with similar illnesses in the general population e.g., fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, somatoform disorders. The specific aims are to show that 1 individuals with PGS display centrally mediated disturbances in autonomic tone, and this leads to vasomotor instability and smooth muscle dysmotility, 2 individuals with PGS display diffuse disturbances in nociception pain threshold that are partly responsible for many pain-related symptoms seen in this condition e.g., myalgia, arthralgia, sore throat, and 3 the same neuroendocrine changes seen in fibromyalgia, CFS, and PTSD, characterized by blunting of the hypothalamic-pituitary axes, are seen in PGS, and contribute substantially to the fatigue seen in this condition. PGS patients and appropriate control groups will be admitted to the Clinical Research Center at Georgetown University Medical Center and will undergo testing of autonomic, neuroendocrine, and nociception pain tolerance systems. To date, because of difficulty with recruiting patients, we have studied 4 PGS patients and 16 control patients. Recent efforts have been undertaken to enhance recruitment which we feel will be effective in increasing these numbers.
- Medicine and Medical Research