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Vol. 12 - Num. 46

Brief Reports

Physical consequences of child sexual abuse: an update

Noemí Pereda Beltrána

aGrup de Recerca en Victimització Infantil i Adolescent (GreVIA). Departament de Personalitat, Avaluació i Tractament psicològics. Facultat de Psicologia. Universitat de Barcelona. Barcelona. España.

Correspondence: N Pereda. E-mail:

Reference of this article: Pereda Beltrán N. Physical consequences of child sexual abuse: an update. Rev Pediatr Aten Primaria. 2010;12:273-285.

Published in Internet: 30-06-2010 - Visits: 107108


Introduction: Child sexual abuse experience is usually followed by serious physical and psychological consequences. It is necessary to know the possible effects of this problem on the victim’s health to detect early these situations and to conduct effective treatments. Exposition: important physical indicators of child sexual abuse would include: genital and anal injuries, sperm, infections and sexually transmitted diseases (gonococci, condiloms, or genital warts, and syphilis) before puberty, and pregnancy. However, a great number of the cases do not present physical evidence, making difficult to detect. In adult victims, physical pain, conversion disorder, non-epileptic seizures, somatization, gynecological disorders, and early menopause, are some of the most frequent physical problems.

Conclusions: health professionals must know the indicators and consequences of child sexual abuse to identify these cases as soon as possible and to early and effectively intervene on its serious consequences.


Child sexual abuse Functional gastrointestinal disorders Menstrual disorders Systematic review


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