Childhood sexual and physical abuse and the 1-year prevalence of medical problems in the National Comorbidity Survey.
In a population sample (N=5,877; ages 15 to 54), the authors found childhood sexual and physical abuse to be associated with the 1-year prevalence of serious health problems for both men and women. The authors also found that participants' psychiatric disorders partially mediated the effects of physical and sexual abuse on adult health. However, childhood abuse continued to independently influence health status after the authors controlled for psychiatric disorders. Contrary to expectations, individuals who experienced a combination of sexual and physical abuse did not have a higher frequency of health problems than those who experienced either type of abuse alone. Implications for these findings are discussed, including possible mechanisms that may account for the association between childhood abuse and adult health problems.
Sachs-Ericsson, N; Blazer, D; Plant, EA; Arnow, B
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