The Mayo Clinic just issued the following news release:
Mayo Clinic Researchers Examine the Psychological Impact of Child Abuse
SAN FRANCISCO, May 21 — According to a new Mayo Clinic study, a history
of child abuse significantly impacts the wide range of challenges facing
Included are an increase in suicide attempts, prevalence of substance
use disorder, and a higher incidence rate of personality disorder.
Additionally, these victims also had an earlier onset of mental illness
and an increase in psychiatric hospitalizations for psychiatric issues.
The study was presented at the American Psychiatric Association 2009
Annual Meeting in San Francisco.
The impact of child abuse already is known to increase the risk of
suicide; however, the literature about other characteristics of
depressed victims of child abuse is scarce.
Although the findings of the Mayo study do not confirm causality, the
information stresses the importance of more aggressive approaches from
the public health perspective to prevent child abuse.
“A history of child abuse makes most psychiatric illnesses worse,”
according to Magdalena Romanowicz, M.D., lead author of the study.
“We found that it significantly impacts the wide range of
characteristics of depressed inpatients, including increased risk of
suicide attempt, substance abuse, as well as earlier onset of mental
illness and more psychiatric hospitalizations.
This new information serves as a reminder of the importance of child
abuse prevention from a public health perspective.”
Dr. Romanowicz says plans are under way to further examine the
association between child abuse and metal illness in a larger study of
Other authors of this Mayo Clinic study include: Gen Shinozaki, M.D.;
Victoria Passov, M.D.; Simon Kung, M.D.; Renato Alarcon, M.D.; and David
Courtesy of Ken Pope