Health Effects

Intimate partner violence leads to significant morbidity and mortality and contributes to high health care costs. Victims of IPV experience similar problems as patients with general crisis or trauma (Box 45-1). Abused U.S. women show increased rates of poor general health, digestive problems, abdominal pain, urinary and vaginal infections, pelvic pain, sexual dysfunction, headache, and chronic pain (Campbell, 2002). In particular, these women suffer from gynecologic, central nervous system (CNS), and stress-related problems at an increased rate of 50% to 70% (Wathen and MacMil-lan, 2003). The largest difference between sexually abused and non-sexually abused women is in gynecologic complaints. In addition to direct harm caused by trauma, perinatal complications include low birth weight, antepartum

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