Child abuse and neglect

W. Lane, M. H. Bair-Merritt, H. Dubowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


It is important for surgeons to be able to accurately assess and diagnose child abuse. While they are generally not the only medical professionals involved in the care of children with suspected abuse, they are highly regarded by hospital and social service staff, and their input regarding the cause of injury is unlikely to be ignored. Appropriate diagnosis of abusive injury can prevent future morbidity and mortality in these vulnerable patients, and can also reduce the trauma to families from false accusations of abuse. A sensitive and open-ended history, thorough physical examination, appropriate diagnostic workup with consideration of child abuse as an underlying cause, appropriate documentation of findings, and determination of safety for discharge can greatly improve an abused child's current and future health and safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)264-272
Number of pages9
JournalScandinavian Journal of Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Child physical abuse
  • Differential diagnosis
  • Epidemiology
  • Evaluation
  • Identification
  • Treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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