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Case-Control Retrospective Study of Child Sexual Abuse History among Psychiatric Consultations in a General Hospital Emergency Room.

Isr Med Assoc J. 2019 Feb;21(2):77-81

Authors: Jaworowski S, Golmard JL, Engelberg M, Prijs S, Twizer L, Gropp C, Mergui J

Abstract
BACKGROUND: A history of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) has been linked to a variety of physical and psychiatric illnesses, including ischemic heart disease and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
OBJECTIVES: To determine the prevalence of past CSA and re-traumatization among hospital psychiatric consultations and to determine whether a CSA group in a hospital setting shared characteristics with community samples described in the literature.
METHODS: We divided 228 consecutive psychiatric consultations into two groups. One group comprised patients with a past history of CSA while the other group had no such history. Both groups were further divided into a subgroup that presented with features of re-traumatization.
RESULTS: In the cohort, 38% described a history of CSA. Twenty patients were identified as presenting with features of re-traumatization. There were significant differences between the two groups. The patients with a history of CSA were more likely to have arrived at the emergency department (ED) during the preceding 12 months with a diagnosis of PTSD, personality disorder, and substance use disorder. There was a greater proportion of patients in the CSA group who had grown up in an ultra-Orthodox Jewish household and who currently identified as being secular.
CONCLUSIONS: The characteristics of the patients with past CSA in this study are similar to community-based samples, except for a significant gender difference. To the best of our knowledge, this study is the first to investigate CSA history during hospital ED psychiatric consultations. A history of CSA should be considered during psychiatric consultations in a general hospital ED admission.

PMID: 30772955 [PubMed – in process]

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