More on Cutting the Military Budget
A few days ago, I wrote about the military’s desire to cut back on care for the troops. Judging by the news, the military has done a good job of avoiding caring for soldiers with traumatic injuries. The Wall Street Journal just reported that soldiers also suffer from a high rate of arthritis, which is not surprising, given that they must carry heavy weights on uneven terrain.
At least we can be reassured that the soldiers will share the burden with the (most of the) rest of society and that our society is fair.
Lukits, Ann. 2011. “Military Members at Risk for Joint Problems.” Wall Street Journal (26 July).http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111904233404576458564080952384.html?mod=ITP_personaljournal_1
“U.S. service members are at high risk of early disability from osteoarthritis due to the job’s extreme physical demands, according to a study in Arthritis and Rheumatism. An estimated 26.9 million American adults have osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis in older individuals. The condition is also associated with traumatic joint injuries. From 1999 to 2008, first-time diagnoses of osteoarthritis were recorded in active-duty service members from the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps. On average, 10,827 cases were diagnosed annually among about 1.4 million service members.”
“Osteoarthritis rates were 26% higher in members age 20 to 24 than in the general population, and twice as high in those over 40, the study found. Women had 20% higher rates of osteoarthritis than men; blacks had 15% to 26% higher rates than non-blacks.”
“The Army had the highest rate of osteoarthritis, followed by the Air Force, Marine Corps and Navy. Regular knee and hip bending plus strenuous physical activity likely contribute to higher osteoarthritis rates in service members, the study concludes. More research on risk factors in military populations is recommended.”