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Medicina Legal de Costa Rica

On-line version ISSN 2215-5287Print version ISSN 1409-0015


COHEN ROSENSTOCK, Stephanie  and  COB GUILLEN, Esteban. Sexual abuse in the pediatric patient. Med. leg. Costa Rica [online]. 2019, vol.36, n.1, pp.54-61. ISSN 2215-5287.

Child sexual abuse is the most common specific cause of intrafamilial violence in children under 18 years old in Costa Rica. Among the risk factors are belonging to a dysfunctional family, the use of violence as a method of education, lack of sexual education, and children with cognitive disabilities or developmental disorders. Minors tend to be chronically abused victims and that their report is delayed, so the assessment should start from the moment of the slightest suspicion. The approach must be comprehensive, performing a detailed clinical history and physical examination, as well as a legal assessment and evidence collection. Countless consequences suffer the victims of child sexual abuse, among them are personality disorders, gender disorder, sexually transmitted diseases, and depression. Although Costa Rica is at the forefront of international human rights issues, the incidence of reported cases of child sexual abuse has increased in recent years, which is why it is an issue that involves all actors in society to address it.

Keywords : Pediatric sexual abuse; pediatric victim; medical-legal evaluation.

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