Objective: This study examines the extent to which discharges from Initial Entry Training can be adequately characterized by the current policy of a single descriptive category. Methods: Service records of each trainee discharged from Fort Leonard Wood in 2003 were examined. Discharged trainee's counseling and outpatient clinic visit records were reviewed for evidence of multiple reasons for discharge. Results: Evidence of medical involvement was found by record review in 13% of administrative discharges. Among discharges classified as being for medical or physical conditions that did not exist before service, 17% had clear evidence of preexisting chronic conditions. Conclusion: The policy of allowing only one categorization code to describe reasons for an Initial Entry Training discharge frequently resulted in incomplete characterization of factors leading to discharge. Pre-existing medical and mental health conditions were found in a much greater percentage of discharges than indicated by a simple review of discharge codes.