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Ionizing Radiation Registry Health Exam for Veterans

VA’s Ionizing Radiation Registry health exam alerts Veterans to possible long-term health problems that may be related to ionizing radiation exposure during their military service. The registry data helps VA understand and respond to these health problems more effectively.

Contact the Veterans Exposure Team-Health Outcomes Military Exposures (VET-HOME) about getting an Ionizing Radiation Registry health exam.

About the Ionizing Radiation Registry health exam

This comprehensive health exam includes an exposure and medical history, laboratory tests, and a physical exam. A VA health professional will discuss the results face-to-face with the Veteran and in a follow-up letter.

Two doctors examining a patient

Important points about registry health exams:

  • Free to eligible Veterans and no co-payment
  • Not a disability compensation exam or required for other VA benefits
  • Enrollment in VA’s health care system not necessary
  • Based on Veterans’ recollection of service, not on their military records
  • Will not confirm ionizing radiation exposure
  • Veterans should follow up with their primary care provider for care and treatment or if new problems develop
  • Veterans' family members are not eligible for registry exam

Eligibility for Ionizing Radiation Registry health exam

Veterans who meet any of the following criteria are eligible:

  • On-site participation in a test involving the atmospheric detonation of a nuclear device, whether or not the testing nation was the United States
  • Participation in the occupation of Hiroshima or Nagasaki from August 6, 1945 through July 1, 1946
  • Internment as a prisoner of war in Japan during World War II
  • Receipt of nasopharyngeal (NP)—nose and throat—radium irradiation treatments while in the active military, naval, or air service
  • Involved in the following "radiation-risk activities":
    • Service at Department of Energy gaseous diffusion plants at Paducah, KY, Portsmouth, OH, or the K25 area at Oak Ridge, TN, for at least 250 days before February 1, 1992 under certain conditions
    • Proximity to "Longshot," "Milrow," or "Cannikin" underground nuclear tests at Amchitka Island, AK, before January 1, 1974

Interested in disability compensation?

The registry evaluation is separate from VA’s disability compensation process and does not confirm exposure during service.

Veterans who want to be considered for disability compensation for exposure-related health problems must file a claim for disability compensation.

During the claims process, VA will check military records to confirm exposure to ionizing radiation. If necessary, we will set up a separate exam for compensation.

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