Skeletal injuries associated with sexual abuse.
ABSTRACT Sexual abuse is often associated with physical abuse, the most common injuries being bruising and other soft-tissue injuries, but fractures occur in 5% of sexually abused children. The fractures described to date have formed part of the spectrum of injuries in these children and have not been specifically related to the abusive act.
To describe concurrent sexual abuse and fractures.
Three children with pelvic or femoral shaft injuries in association with sexual abuse.
A 3-year-old girl with extensive soft-tissue injuries to the arms, legs and perineum also sustained fractures of both pubic rami and the sacral side of the right sacro-iliac joint. A 5-month-old girl with an introital tear was shown to have an undisplaced left femoral shaft fracture. A 5-year-old girl presented with an acute abdomen and pneumoperitoneum due to a ruptured rectum following sexual abuse. She had old healed fractures of both pubic rami with disruption of the symphysis pubis.
Although the finding of a perineal injury in a young child may be significant enough for the diagnosis of abuse, additional skeletal injuries revealed by radiography will assist in confirmation of that diagnosis and may be more common than hitherto suspected.
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Skeletal surveys for non-accidental trauma (NAT) include lateral spinal and pelvic views, which have a significant radiation dose. OBJECTIVE: To determine whether pelvic and lateral spinal radiographs should routinely be performed during initial bone surveys for suspected NAT. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The radiology database was queried for the period May 2005 to May 2011 using CPT codes for skeletal surveys for suspected NAT. Studies performed for skeletal dysplasia and follow-up surveys were excluded. Initial skeletal surveys were reviewed to identify fractures present, including those identified only on lateral spinal and/or pelvic radiographs. Clinical information and MR imaging was reviewed for the single patient with vertebral compression deformities. RESULTS: Of the 530 children, 223 (42.1%) had rib and extremity fractures suspicious for NAT. No fractures were identified solely on pelvic radiographs. Only one child (<0.2%) had vertebral compression deformities identified on a lateral spinal radiograph. This infant had rib and extremity fractures and was clinically paraplegic. MR imaging confirmed the vertebral body fractures. CONCLUSION: Since no fractures were identified solely on pelvic radiographs and on lateral spinal radiographs in children without evidence of NAT, nor in nearly all with evidence of NAT, inclusion of these views in the initial evaluation of children for suspected NAT may not be warranted.Pediatric Radiology 01/2013; · 1.57 Impact Factor
Article: Childhood sexual abuse: an update.[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Research into child sexual abuse over the past year has provided further support to what is already known about prevalence and long-term effects. A number of advances have been made in research, examining the mediating influences between child sexual abuse and the development of long-term problems.Current Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology 11/1998; 10(5):383-6. · 2.64 Impact Factor
Article: Orthopaedic aspects of child abuse.[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Increased awareness of child abuse has led to better understanding of this complex problem. However, the annual incidence of abuse is estimated at 15 to 42 cases per 1,000 children and appears to be increasing. More than 1 million children each year are the victims of substantiated abuse or neglect, and more than 1,200 children die each year as a result of abuse. The diagnosis of child abuse is seldom easy to make and requires a careful consideration of sociobehavioral factors and clinical findings. Because manifestations of physical abuse involve the entire child, a thorough history and a complete examination are essential. Fractures are the second most common presentation of physical abuse after skin lesions, and approximately one third of abused children will eventually be seen by an orthopaedic surgeon. Thus, it is essential that the orthopaedist have an understanding of the manifestations of physical abuse, to increase the likelihood of recognition and appropriate management. There is no pathognomonic fracture pattern in abuse. Rather, the age of the child, the overall injury pattern, the stated mechanism of injury, and pertinent psychosocial factors must all be considered in each case. Musculoskeletal injury patterns suggestive of nonaccidental injury include certain metaphyseal lesions in young children, multiple fractures in various stages of healing, posterior rib fractures, and long-bone fractures in children less than 2 years old. Skeletal surveys and bone scintigraphy with follow-up radiography may be of benefit in cases of suspected abuse of younger children. The differential diagnosis of abuse includes other conditions that may cause fractures, such as true accidental injury, osteogenesis imperfecta, and metabolic bone disease. Management should be multidisciplinary, with the key being recognition, because abused children have a substantial risk of repeated abuse and death.The Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons 01/2007; 8(1):10-20. · 2.46 Impact Factor