Publications

The following manuscripts have been published or are currently in press. Listings are in chronological order, unless otherwise noted.

Research Publication 2
Title Publication Date/Location
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Predicts Future Weight Change in the Millennium Cohort Study Obesity 2015 Apr;23(4):886-92

LeardMann CA, Woodall KA, Littman AJ, Jacobson IG, Boyko EJ, Smith B, Wells TS, Crum-Cianflone NF

Data from Millennium Cohort Study participants (2001-2008), consisting of US Service members and Veterans, were used to prospectively examine the association between posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and weight change. A significant and consistent association of PTSD with subsequent three-year weight gain and the development of obesity was found in adjusted models. Given these findings, weight gain and development of obesity should be considered important comorbidities for PTSD; existing screening and treatment programs should make sure to address these associated conditions.

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Obesity and Associated Adverse Health Outcomes Among US Military Members: Findings from the Millennium Cohort Study Obesity 2016 Jul;24(7):1582-1589

Rush T, LeardMann CA, Crum-Cianflone NF

This study examined body weight among Service members and Veterans over time (2001-2007), finding a doubling of the prevalence of obesity. Obesity rates were significantly higher among veterans, including among those recently discharged from service. The study found that military personnel, even during service time, experienced weight gain and the development of obesity. Individuals with obesity had higher rates of adverse physical, mental, and functional health, suggesting that weight control should be a DoD and national priority.

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Association of deployment with maintenance of healthy weight among active duty service members in the Millennium Cohort Study Obesity Science and Practice 2021; 1- 7. doi:10.1002/osp4.556

Carey FR, Jacobson IG, Roenfeldt KA, Rull RP

Understanding changes in weight in relation to deployment readiness can inform Department of Defense fitness policies. This study examined longitudinal associations between deployment and service branch-specific changes in body mass index (BMI) among active duty participants without obesity (BMI< 30kg/m2) at baseline (n=22,995). Service members, particularly Army and Marine Corps personnel, with longer deployments were less likely to maintain a healthy weight (BMI < 30) than those with shorter deployment lengths. Conversely, each additional deployment increased the likelihood of maintaining a healthy weight post-deployment for personnel in the Army, Marine Corps, and within the pooled population. These results indicate that multiple deployments may support healthy weight maintenance and longer deployments may adversely impact weight maintenance. Fitness policies designed to optimize service member readiness should consider modifiable behaviors related to weight gain among those who are deployed for long periods of time.

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The Impact of Prior Deployment Experience on Civilian Employment After Military Service Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2013; 70: 408-417

Horton JL, Jacobson IG, Wong CA, Wells TS, Boyko EJ, Smith B, Ryan MA, and Smith TC

Employment after military service, in particular after stressful deployment experiences, is a concern for many veterans and policymakers. Among this large cohort of veterans, we found that prior deployment and PTSD were not significantly associated with job status post-service; in contrast, depression, panic/anxiety disorder, and poor physical health increased the risk of unemployment among certain groups. These findings may guide policy for veterans most in need of post-military employment support.

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Mental Health, Physical Health, and Health-Related Behaviors of U.S. Army Special Forces PLOS One 2020 Jun 3;15(6):e023356

Cooper AD, Warner SG, Rivera AC, Rull RP, Adler AB, Faix DJ, Neff RR, Deagle EA, Caserta RJ, LeardMann CA, for the Millennium Cohort Study Team

Using prospective data, Army Special Forces personnel and Ranger Qualified infantrymen reported fewer mental health problems, multiple somatic symptoms, and unhealthy behaviors than General Purpose Forces infantrymen. Findings indicate that the adoption of healthy behaviors, such as adequate sleep and physical activity, may be an efficient and cost-effective approach for preventing adverse health outcomes, regardless of occupational specialization or prior health status.

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Cigarette smoking patterns among U.S. military service members before and after separation from the military PLoS One 2021 Oct 4;16(10):e0257539

Nieh C, Mancuso JD, Powell TM, Welsh MM, Gackstetter GD, Hooper TI.

Millennium Cohort Study data were used to examine smoking behavior at enrollment into the study and through their first follow-up survey, approximately 3 years later. Time remaining in service from baseline until separation or the first follow-up survey was the main exposure of interest. The baseline prevalence of smoking in the Cohort was higher among those who eventually separated (20.1%) than among those who remained on active service (17.4%), but the overall prevalence of current smokers significantly declined over the observation period. Factors significantly associated with greater likelihood of smoking at follow- up were baseline smoking, non-White Hispanic individuals, being non-married, enlisted rank, underweight or healthy BMI, active duty component, any alcohol consumption, experiencing two or more stressful life events, and screening positive for either PTSD or depression. Including smoking prevention and/or cessation programs in pre-separation counseling sessions and developing smoking screening and cessation programs targeting high-risk subgroups may reduce smoking among Service members and veterans.

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Early Mortality Experience in a Large Military Cohort and a Comparison of Data Sources Used for Mortality Ascertainment Population Health Metrics 2010 May;8(1):15

Hooper TI, Gackstetter GD, LeardMann CA, Boyko EJ, Pearse LA, Smith B, Amoroso PA, Smith TC, for the Millennium Cohort Study Team

This study assessed the ability of four different mortality data sources to document the early mortality experience of the Cohort. The strengths and limitations of each data source are described and support continued use of multiple sources for future mortality assessment.

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Combat Experience, New-Onset Mental Health Conditions, and Posttraumatic Growth in U.S. Service Members Psychiatry Fall 2021;84(3):276-290

Jacobson IG, Adler AB, Roenfeldt KA, Porter,B., LeardMann CA, Rull RP, Hoge CW

Research on posttraumatic growth (PTG) after traumatic experiences has raised questions on measurement, validity, and clinical utility. We longitudinally examined PTG among Millennium Cohort Study deployers (n=8,732), who screened negative for PTSD and depression at time 1, using a measure that improved upon previous psychometric issues. A strong inverse correlation was found between PTG scores at time 2 and new onset mental health problems (PTSD, depression), where lower growth scores correlated with worse mental health (i.e. higher PTSD or depression screening scores). Only 5% of participants who screened positive for a mental health problem at time 2 experienced positive growth. Results suggest that measurement of PTG is not independent from mental health problems following combat experiences and thus challenge the clinical utility of the PTG construct.

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PTSD Prevalence, Associated Exposures, and Functional Health Outcomes in a Large, Population-Based Military Cohort Public Health Report 2009 Jan;124:90-102

Smith TC, Wingard DL, Ryan MAK, Kritz-Silverstein D, Slymen DJ, Sallis JF, for the Millennium Cohort Study Team

Findings suggest a 2% prevalence of current PTSD symptoms in the US Military that are associated with increased reporting of exposures and decrements in functional health.

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Prospectively Assessed Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Associated Physical Activity Public Health Reports 2011 May/Jun;126(3):371-83

LeardMann CA, Kelton ML, Smith B, Littman AJ, Boyko EJ, Wells TS, Smith TC, for the Millennium Cohort Study Team

Nearly 90% of the Cohort participate in some level of physical activity. Engagement in physical activity, specifically vigorous activity, was associated with decreased odds of PTSD symptoms. While further research is needed, a physical activity component may be valuable to treat and/or prevent PTSD among service members.

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