Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

VA Health Systems Research

Go to the VA ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Comorbidity Correlates of Death Among New Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan Deployment.

Copeland LA, Finley EP, Bollinger MJ, Amuan ME, Pugh MJ. Comorbidity Correlates of Death Among New Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan Deployment. Medical care. 2016 Dec 1; 54(12):1078-1081.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


BACKGROUND: Veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan who receive care in the Veterans Health Administration (VA) have high disease burden. Distinct comorbidity patterns have been shown to be differentially associated with adverse outcomes, including death. This study determined correlates of 5-year mortality. MATERIALS AND METHODS: VA demographic, military, homelessness, and clinical measures informed this retrospective analysis. Previously constructed comorbidity classifications over 3 years of care were entered into a Cox proportional hazards model of death. RESULTS: There were 164,933 veterans in the cohort, including African Americans (16%), Hispanics (11%), and whites (65%). Most were in their 20s at baseline (60%); 12% were women; 4% had attempted suicide; 4% had been homeless. Having clustered disorders of pain, posttraumatic stress disorder, and traumatic brain injury was associated with death [hazard ratio (HR) = 2.0]. Mental disorders including substance abuse were similarly associated (HR = 2.1). Prior suicide attempt (HR = 2.2) or drug overdose (HR = 3.0) considerably increased risk of death over 5 years. CONCLUSIONS: As congressional actions such as Veterans Choice Act offer more avenues to seek care outside of VA, coordination of care, and suicide prevention outreach for recent veterans may require innovative approaches to preserve life.

Questions about the HSR website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.