Skip to Content

Post-Deployment Cardiopulmonary Evaluation Network (PDCEN)

The Post-Deployment Cardiopulmonary Evaluation Network (or PDCEN) provides standardized, comprehensive clinical evaluations of Veterans enrolled in the Airborne Hazards and Open Burn Pits Registry (AHOBPR) who also report breathlessness or other lung conditions.

 The program is based out of the Airborne Hazards and Burn Pits Center of Excellence (AHBPCE) at the New Jersey War Related Illness and Injury Study Center (NJ WRIISC), but has several sites around the country. Baltimore is one of those sites.

The program includes in-person or telemedicine-based assessments to evaluate Veterans’ respiratory conditions, cardiopulmonary function and exposure concerns. The NJ WRIISC has collaborated with multiple Veterans Affairs Hospitals to offer this clinical evaluation to Veterans with specific health concerns who completed the Registry across the United States.

The PDCEN is composed of VA physicians with expertise in pulmonary and occupational medicine. The goal of the Network is to better identify the relationship between airborne hazards and burn pit exposures and longer-term health outcomes, to identify research to improve understanding of health concerns and, to identify possible treatments to improve care. PDCEN-Baltimore works collaboratively with the other PDCEN sites to develop new clinical guidelines to care for Veterans who have been exposed to airborne hazards and burn pits.

Contact Information

Baltimore VA Medical Center

Hours: 7:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Eligibility for Program

PDCEN-Baltimore sees Veterans who live within a 50-mile radius of the Baltimore VA Medical Center who meet the following criteria:

  • Completed the Airborne Hazards and Open Burn Pits Registry (AHOBPR) and requested an in-person evaluation
  • Self-reported in the registry of having Constrictive Bronchiolitis, Obstructive Lung Disease such as COPD or Asthma, Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) or other interstitial lung disease or unexplained shortness of breath
    Note: Veterans are eligible to be seen in the PDCEN for these only if they have also completed the registry
  • Have a VA Primary Care Provider (PCP) and/or have previously been seen at a Veterans Affairs Hospital

List of Service/Programs Provided

Based on an established protocol, Veterans who have been identified from the registry may be invited to come to the Baltimore VA Medical Center for further in-depth studies which include an advanced, comprehensive cardiopulmonary evaluation. The comprehensive cardiopulmonary evaluation may include, but is not limited to:

  • History & physical examination
  • Detailed lifetime exposure assessment (pre-deployment, during deployment, and post deployment)
  • Advanced cardiopulmonary services, such as pulmonary function testing (PFT), forced oscillometry, bronchoprovocation and cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET)
  • Chest imaging (CT scan/chest x-ray)
  • ENT (Ear, Nose, and Throat) examination, with imaging (CT scan of sinuses)
  • Sleep study & consult
  • Mental health screenings
  • Blood tests
  • Heart echocardiogram

Additional Information

War Related Illness and Injury Study Center

Baltimore Post Deployment Cardiopulmonary Evaluation Network (PDCEN)