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Soldiers in Iraq Have Fewer Urinary Stones Than Expected

Last Updated: July 03, 2009.

Despite the hot climate and risk of dehydration, servicemen and women deployed to Southwest Asia had a lower incidence of urolithiasis than the general U.S. population, according to a survey reported in the July issue of Urology.

FRIDAY, July 3 (HealthDay News) -- Despite the hot climate and risk of dehydration, servicemen and women deployed to Southwest Asia had a lower incidence of urolithiasis than the general U.S. population, according to a survey reported in the July issue of Urology.

Jennifer M. Pugliese, M.D., of Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma, Wash., and colleagues surveyed personnel returning from deployment to Southwest Asia and compared the demographics and medical histories of those who developed urolithiasis within the first 90 days of returning home and those who did not.

The researchers received 6,153 surveys during a nine-month study period with 60 respondents reporting urolithiasis while deployed. The personnel who reported urolithiasis were slightly older than those who did not (mean age 32.6 versus 29 years). For those with a personal history of urolithiasis, the odds of reporting a stone during deployment were 30.9 times greater then for those without a personal history of the condition. For those with a family history of stones, the risk was 2.4 greater. There was no difference in the rates by sex, race, or seasonal temperature variations.

"As such, military personnel with a personal history or family history of urolithiasis should be considered at high risk of developing urolithiasis during deployment. These individuals should be screened for active stone disease, and preventive measures should be initiated before deployment," the authors conclude.

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