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Minerva Pediatrics 2021 Jun 29

DOI: 10.23736/S2724-5276.21.06459-4

Copyright © 2021 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

An Italian single-centre retrospective analysis of 1106 consecutive cases of child and adolescent abuse: key elements of effective practices

Giussy BARBARA 1, 2, Federica COLLINI 2, 3, Laura BUGGIO 1 , Cristina CATTANEO 2, 3, Giulia TISO 2, Laura MARASCIUOLO 2, 3, Alessandra KUSTERMANN 2

1 Gynecological Unit, Fondazione IRCCS Ca’ Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Milan, Italy; 2 SVSeD (Service for Sexual and Domestic Violence), Fondazione IRCCS Ca’ Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Milan, Italy; 3 Section of Legal Medicine, Department of Biomedical and Health Sciences, University of Milan, Milan, Italy


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BACKGROUND: Child and adolescent maltreatment refer to several forms of abuse and neglect, with negative and harmful consequences on children’s and adolescents’ physical and psychological health.
METHODS: This study aims to provide a wide perspective on child and adolescents maltreatment from a large, public, anti-violence centre located in a university hospital (SVSeD, Sexual and Domestic Violence Service) and to suggest models of tailored therapeutic interventions and proposals for effective clinical practice.
RESULTS: The sample study was obtained by analyzing 1106 medical records of victims aged 0 to 17 referring to SVSeD for all types of abuse. Our findings confirm that almost in one third (28,2%) of the cases children and adolescents are victims of multiple different types of violence. In our experience, sexual violence plays a leading role (66% of cases), being the most frequent type of child and adolescent abuse.
CONCLUSIONS: This study confirms that child and adolescent abuse could manifest in many different ways, which are often not so easily detected, as the violence usually occurs inside the family. Institutional educational programs should be implemented to increase the health practitioners’ skills and competence for detecting and reporting children and adolescents who are victims of abuse.


KEY WORDS: Child abuse; Child maltreatment; Adolescence; Sexual violence

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