Raitis Eglītis, Dace Landmane
Health and legal professionals are aware of adverse effects child sexual abuse (CSA) can have on child development as well as the individual differences in severity of psychological outcomes. The objective of this pilot study was to identify possible explanations that could account for the CSA psychological outcome variability and give insights for further research. A sample of 25 Russian speaking girls by the decision of the person directing the proceedings were recognized as CSA victims and were assigned to psychological or complex psychiatric and psychological expert examination. During examination demographical data was collected and several self-report measures regarding peritraumatic and posttraumatic experiences were applied. Correlation analysis revealed that the only demographical characteristic associated with posttraumatic symptoms (familiarity with abuser, type of abuse, age at onset of abuse, time after last episode) was age at onset of abuse. Peritraumatic measures overall were associated with all of the posttraumatic symptoms and stepwise regression analysis showed that age at onset of abuse and peritraumatic experiences explained nearly 50% of variation of several posttraumatic symptoms. Further research directions are discussed.
Keyword(s): child sexual abuse; trauma; peritraumatic distress; peritraumatic dissociation; posttraumatic reactions.
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