Radiation, Agent Orange and Herbicides (PACT Act)

Radiation, Agent Orange and Herbicides (PACT Act)

New Locations:

  • Enewetak Atoll radiological cleanup in the Marshall Islands (Jan. 1, 1977 – Dec. 21, 1980)
    • 43 nuclear tests on Enewetak Proving Ground in Pacific Ocean (1948 – 1958)
  • Veterans participating in the nuclear response effort near Palomares, Spain (Jan. 17, 1966 – March 31, 1967)
    • Result of a USAF B-52 bomber collision with a refueling plane, causing the release of four thermonuclear weapons.
  • Veterans participating in the nuclear response effort near Thule, Greenland (Jan 21, 1968 – Sept. 25, 1968)
    • Response effort resulting from on board fire and crash of USAF B-52 bomber causing the release of four thermonuclear weapons in the vicinity of Thule AFB, Greenland.

PACT Act did NOT change recognized diseases relating to radiation exposure, the list of conditions is below:

  • Leukemia (other than lymphocytic leukemia)
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Pharynx cancer
  • Esophagus cancer
  • Stomach cancer
  • Cancer of the small intestine
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Lymphomas (excluding Hodgkin’s disease)
  • Cancer of the bile ducts
  • Cancer of the gallbladder
  • Primary liver cancer (except if cirrhosis or hepatitis B is indicated)
  • Cancer of the salivary gland
  • Cancer of the urinary tract (kidneys, renal pelves, ureters, urinary bladder, and urethra)
  • Bronchiolo-alveolar carcinoma
  • Bone cancer
  • Brain cancer
  • Colon cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Ovarian cancer

Herbicides/Agent Orange

New presumptive locations:

  • Thailand at any US or Royal Thai base (Jan. 9, 1962 – June 30, 1976)
    • This presumption does not extend to service only in the territorial waters of Thailand, but will be expanded to apply if there is evidence of serving on a ship called at a Thailand coastal base during this period.
  • Laos (Dec. 1, 1965 – Sept. 30, 1969)
  • Cambodia at Mimot or Krek, Kampong Cham Province (April 16, 1969 – April 30, 1969)
  • Guam or American Samoa or their territorial waters (Jan. 9, 1962 – Sept. 30, 1980)
  • Johnston Atoll or a ship that called to Johnston Atoll (Jan. 1, 1972 – Sept. 30, 1977)
    • Does not apply to the offshore territorial waters of Johnston Island, but does apply to those who served on the atoll or who were aboard a ship which called to Johnston Atoll during this period.

New presumptive conditions:

  • Hypertension
  • Monoclonal Gammopathy of Undetermined Significance (MGUS)

Previous presumptive cancers:

  • Bladder cancer
  • Chronic B-cell leukemia
  • Hodgkin’s disease
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Non-hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Prostate cancer
  • Respiratory cancers (Cancer of the lung, larynx, trachea, and bronchus)
  • Some soft tissue sarcomas (Not included: osteosarcoma, chondrosarcoma, Kaposi’s sarcoma, or mesothelioma)

Previous presumptive illnesses:

    • AL amyloidosis
    • Chloracne (or other types of acneiform disease like it)
      • Must be 10% disabling within one year of herbicide exposure
    • Diabetes mellitus type II
    • Hypothyroidism
    • Ischemic heart disease
      • The VA defines Ischemic Heart Disease as “any atherosclerotic heart disease resulting in clinically significant ischemia or requiring coronary revascularization.
      • Does not encompass hypertension or peripheral manifestations of arteriosclerotic heart disease, such as peripheral vascular disease or stroke.
      • Including, but not limited to, acute, subacute, and old myocardial infarction, atherosclertic cardiovascular disease including coronary artery

disease (including coronary spasm) and coronary bypass surgery, and stable, unstable, and Prinzmetal’s angina.)

  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Parkinsonism
  • Peripheral neuropathy, early onset
    • Must be 10% disabling within one year of herbicide exposure
  • Porphyria cutanea tarda
    • Must be 10% disabling within one year of herbicide exposure

NOT ASSOCIATION with Agent Orange:

Below is a list of conditions that the VA does NOT associate with Agent Orange exposure:

  • Cancers of oral cavity (including lips, tongue), pharynx and tonsils, and nasal cavity (including ears, sinuses)
  • Cancers of the pleura, mediastinum, other unspecified sites w/in respiratory system and intrathoracic organs
  • Cancers of digestive organs (esophagus, stomach, colorectal, small intestine, anus)
  • Hepatobiliary cancers (liver, gallbladder, bile ducts) and pancreatic cancer
  • Bone and connective tissue cancer
  • Melanoma
  • Nonmelanoma skin cancer (basal cell, squamous cell)
  • Cancer of reproductive organs (cervix, uterus, ovary, testes, penis; excludes prostate)
  • Renal cancer (kidney, renal pelvis)
  • Cancer of brain and nervous system (including eye)
  • Endocrine cancers (including thyroid, thymus)
  • Leukemia (other than all chronic B-cell leukemias including chronic lymphocytic leukemia and hairy cell leukemia)
  • Neurobehavioral disorders (cognitive and neuropsychiatric)
  • Neurodegenerativediseases (including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; excluding Parkinson’s disease and Parkinsonism)
  • Chronic peripheral nervous system disorders (excluding early-onset peripheral neuropathy)
  • Asthma
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Farmer’s lung
  • Gastrointestinal, metabolic, and digestive disorders
  • Immune system disorders (immune suppression, allergy, and autoimmunity)
  • Circulatory disorders (excluding hypertension, ischemic heart disease, and stroke)
  • Endometriosis
  • Hearing loss
  • Diseases of the eye
  • Osteoporosis