A Nonrandom Sample of 55 Sexual Abuse Cases in Sivas
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Background: Sexual abuse in childhood is a significant public health problem because of the destructive results both to the individual and to the community. The aim of this study was to examine the sociodemographic characteristics of children who were victims of sexual abuse, the relationship of the victim and abuser, and the findings of sexual abuse. Material/Methods: An examination was made of the results of forensic medicine and psychiatric evaluations of child victims of sexual abuse. The sociodemographic characteristics of the cases and the characteristics of the incidents of sexual abuse were evaluated at the Forensic Medicine Department of Cumhuriyet University between 2013 and 2016. Results: A total of 55 cases were included in the study, comprising eight males (14.5%) and 47 females (85.5%) in the age range of 5-17 years. The vast majority of the cases were high school students. The place of the abuse incident was the home of the victim or the perpetrator in 29 cases (52.7%). The sexual abuse was determined to be bodily penetration in 32 cases (58.1%). In 32 cases (58.1%), the perpetrator was known to the victim. Conclusions: The study findings that the perpetrator of the sexual abuse was known to the child, that predominantly female children were attacked, and the low sociocultural level of the cases were consistent with other studies reported in the literature. To prevent sexual abuse of children, to make an early diagnosis, and to provide rehabilitation for the abused children, it is essential that the evaluations of these cases are made using a professional multidisciplinary approach.