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Absence of Anogenital Injury in the Adolescent Adult Female Sexual Assault Patient

NCJ Number
Jenifer Markowitz, ND, RN, WHNP-BC, SANE-A
Date Published
October 2012
3 pages
This brief examines the absence of reported or documented anogental injury in female sexual assault patients.
This brief examines the absence of reported or documented anogental injuries in adult/adolescent female sexual assault patients. A review of studies examining female sexual assault revealed that a significant number of studies found that a large percentage of study participants reported no anogenital injury. One of the reasons for the lack of reported anogenital injuries results from how the patient is examined, either from looking at the genitalia or anus with the naked eye or using a more specialized technique such as a colonoscopy. The review also found that most studies did not specifically examine injury from anal penetration but rather looked at the extent of trauma in the larger context of all types of sexual assault. Other factors identified as impacting the report of anogenital injury include the age of the victim, the race of the victim, and the timing of the medical examination. Victims aged 12 to 17 were found to have a higher incidence of anogenital injury compared to victims aged 18 to 49, and women of color were found to have these types of injuries at lower rates compared to Caucasian women. The timing of the medical examination of female sexual assault victims was also important, with victims who were examined within 24-48 hours of the assault reporting higher rates of anogenital injuries compared to those who were examined 72 hours after the assault. Endnotes