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Article   |    
Prevalence of a History of Sexual Abuse Among Female Psychiatric Patients in a State Hospital System
Leigh Steiner Craine; Claudia E. Henson; Jerry A. Colliver; Donald G. MacLean
Psychiatric Services 1988; doi:
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Andrew McFarland Mental Health Center and Department of psychiatry at the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine in Springfield

Southern Illinois University School of Medicine

American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

Fifty-one percent of a sample of 105 female state hospital patients were found to have been sexually abused as children or adolescents. In the majority of cases, hospital staff were unaware that the patients had histories of sexual abuse, and only 20 percent of the abused patients believed they had been adequately treated for sexual abuse. Sixty-six percent of the abused patients met the diagnostic criteria for posttraumatic stress disorder, although none had received that diagnosis. Compared with patients who had not been sexually abused, abused patients were significantly more likely to have 17 of 32 symptoms commonly linked with sexual abuse. Every patient who was positive for six symptoms—compulsive sexual behavior, chemical dependency, sadomasochistic sexual fantasy, sexual identity issues, chronic fatigue, and loss of interest in sex—had been sexually abused.

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