Fallujah General Hospital

Al Fallūjah, Iraq

Fallujah General Hospital

Al Fallūjah, Iraq
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Savabieasfahani M.,P.O. Box 7038 | Alaani S.,Fallujah General Hospital | Tafash M.,University of Anbar | Dastgiri S.,Tabriz University of Medical Sciences | Al-Sabbak M.,Basra Maternity Hospital
Environmental Monitoring and Assessment | Year: 2014

Anthropogenic release of pollutants into the environment is especially harmful to growing fetuses and young children. These populations are at an increased risk of damage because exposure to pollutants during critical periods of development can cause many impairments. Children’s exposure to mixtures of metals could be responsible for the rising numbers of neurological disorders surfacing in Iraqi children. Titanium (Ti) and magnesium (Mg) are heavily used in war industries. Exposure to Ti and Mg has been linked to the dust in occupation soldiers’ lungs. Hair samples of children in Hawija, Iraq (n = 13) contained significantly higher levels of Ti compared to Iranian children (n = 13) living near the Iraqi border (2080 ± 940 vs 707 ± 421 μg/kg, p < 0.0001). Magnesium was 1.7 times higher in Hawija children compared to Iranian children (115,763 ± 118,155 vs 67,650 ± 46,729 μg/kg). In samples from Hawija, Ti was 1.3 times higher in children with neurodevelopmental disorders (2198 ± 1108 vs 1942 ± 779 μg/kg), and Mg was 1.9 times higher in children without neurodevelopmental disorders (155,618 ± 140,791 vs 81,602 ± 91,940 μg/kg). Lead, arsenic, and cadmium in Hawija children with neurodevelopmental disorders (n = 6) were 2.5, 2.2, and 1.37 times higher compared to non-disabled children (n = 7). To get a clear understanding of the current status of neurodevelopmental disorders in Iraqi children and to determine the magnitude of this suspected global health issue, registries should be set up to compile and aggregate data from hospitals, clinics, and health centers across the country. Functional registries can develop collaborations with researchers toward finding causes of these disorders in Iraqi children and toward preventing them. © 2014, The Author(s).


Alaani S.,Fallujah General Hospital | Tafash M.,Fallujah General Hospital | Busby C.,University of Ulster | Hamdan M.,Cancer and Birth Defects Foundation | Blaurock-Busch E.,Microtrace
Conflict and Health | Year: 2011

Background: Recent reports have drawn attention to increases in congenital birth anomalies and cancer in Fallujah Iraq blamed on teratogenic, genetic and genomic stress thought to result from depleted Uranium contamination following the battles in the town in 2004. Contamination of the parents of the children and of the environment by Uranium and other elements was investigated using Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry. Hair samples from 25 fathers and mothers of children diagnosed with congenital anomalies were analysed for Uranium and 51 other elements. Mean ages of the parents was: fathers 29.6 (SD 6.2); mothers: 27.3 (SD 6.8). For a sub-group of 6 women, long locks of hair were analysed for Uranium along the length of the hair to obtain information about historic exposures. Samples of soil and water were also analysed and Uranium isotope ratios determined. Results: Levels of Ca, Mg, Co, Fe, Mn, V, Zn, Sr, Al, Ba, Bi, Ga, Pb, Hg, Pd and U (for mothers only) were significantly higher than published mean levels in an uncontaminated population in Sweden. In high excess were Ca, Mg, Sr, Al, Bi and Hg. Of these only Hg can be considered as a possible cause of congenital anomaly. Mean levels for Uranium were 0.16 ppm (SD: 0.11) range 0.02 to 0.4, higher in mothers (0.18 ppm SD 0.09) than fathers (0.11 ppm; SD 0.13). The highly unusual non-normal Fallujah distribution mean was significantly higher than literature results for a control population Southern Israel (0.062 ppm) and a non-parametric test (Mann Whitney-Wilcoxon) gave p = 0.016 for this comparison of the distribution. Mean levels in Fallujah were also much higher than the mean of measurements reported from Japan, Brazil, Sweden and Slovenia (0.04 ppm SD 0.02). Soil samples show low concentrations with a mean of 0.76 ppm (SD 0.42) and range 0.1-1.5 ppm; (N = 18). However it may be consistent with levels in drinking water (2.28 gL-1) which had similar levels to water from wells (2.72 gL-1) and the river Euphrates (2.24 gL-1). In a separate study of a sub group of mothers with long hair to investigate historic Uranium excretion the results suggested that levels were much higher in the past. Uranium traces detected in the soil samples and the hair showed slightly enriched isotopic signatures for hair U238/U235 = (135.16 SD 1.45) compared with the natural ratio of 137.88. Soil sample Uranium isotope ratios were determined after extraction and concentration of the Uranium by ion exchange. Results showed statistically significant presence of enriched Uranium with a mean of 129 with SD5.9 (for this determination, the natural Uranium 95% CI was 132.1 < Ratio < 144.1). Conclusions: Whilst caution must be exercised about ruling out other possibilities, because none of the elements found in excess are reported to cause congenital diseases and cancer except Uranium, these findings suggest the enriched Uranium exposure is either a primary cause or related to the cause of the congenital anomaly and cancer increases. Questions are thus raised about the characteristics and composition of weapons now being deployed in modern battlefields. © 2011 Alaani et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Alaani S.,Fallujah General Hospital | Savabieasfahani M.,P.O. Box 7038 | Tafash M.,Fallujah General Hospital | Tafash M.,University of Anbar | Manduca P.,University of Genoa
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health | Year: 2011

Since 2003, congenital malformations have increased to account for 15% of all births in Fallujah, Iraq. Congenital heart defects have the highest incidence, followed by neural tube defects. Similar birth defects were reported in other populations exposed to war contaminants. While the causes of increased prevalence of birth defects are under investigation, we opted to release this communication to contribute to exploration of these issues. By using a questionnaire, containing residential history and activities that may have led to exposure to war contaminants, retrospective reproductive history of four polygamous Fallujah families were documented. Our findings point to sporadic, untargeted events, with different phenotypes in each family and increased recurrence. The prevalence of familial birth defects after 2003 highlights the relevance of epigenetic mechanisms and offers insights to focus research, with the aim of reducing further damage to people's health. © 2010 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


PubMed | Fallujah General Hospital
Type: Journal Article | Journal: International journal of environmental research and public health | Year: 2011

Since 2003, congenital malformations have increased to account for 15% of all births in Fallujah, Iraq. Congenital heart defects have the highest incidence, followed by neural tube defects. Similar birth defects were reported in other populations exposed to war contaminants. While the causes of increased prevalence of birth defects are under investigation, we opted to release this communication to contribute to exploration of these issues. By using a questionnaire, containing residential history and activities that may have led to exposure to war contaminants, retrospective reproductive history of four polygamous Fallujah families were documented. Our findings point to sporadic, untargeted events, with different phenotypes in each family and increased recurrence. The prevalence of familial birth defects after 2003 highlights the relevance of epigenetic mechanisms and offers insights to focus research, with the aim of reducing further damage to peoples health.

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