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Sexually Abused Children and Sexually Transmitted Diseases


Sexual  abuse  of  children  is  a  complex  problem that has had, until recently, received only limited recognition and discussion in the pediatric literature. The reasons for this are twofold. First, the magnitude of the problem is unrecognized. Sexual child abuse is grossly underreported, with a true incidence perhaps 10-fold higher than the reported incidence. Second, sexual interference with a child is an emotionally loaded situation; thus, health professionals may intentionally or unintentionally overlook it or fail to consider it as a diagnosis. Since 1977, when the C. Anderson Aldrich lecture focused attention on sexual child abuse, health professionals have developed various  protocols for comprehensive management of the sexually abused child. In this paper we focus on one potential sequelae of sexual abuse that must be considered in overall management, i.e., sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Using the literature available at this time, we will examine the epidemiology of acquired STDs in children, make recommendations for management, and suggest directions for future investigations.

Kramer DG,  Jason J

Rev Infect Dis 1982; 4:S883‑S890