Sexual assault-related emergency room visits in the United States increased more than tenfold between 2006 and 2014, according to a new study.
The research, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, found that the number of ER visits related to sexual assault rose from 1,420 to 15,180 during that time period. That’s an increase of more than 1,000%.
“The findings suggest that sexual assault is a more common problem than previously appreciated,” the study authors wrote.
The data came from the Nationwide Emergency Department Sample, which tracks ER visits across the country. The researchers looked at data from 2006 to 2014, the most recent year for which data is available.
They found that the vast majority of sexual assault-related ER visits (85%) were made by women. The average age of patients was 33.
The most common injuries reported were to the head and neck (35%), followed by the genitourinary system (33%), and the musculoskeletal system (19%).
Nearly a quarter of patients (24%) required hospitalization after their ER visit.
The study authors say the findings highlight the need for better prevention and response to sexual assault.
“Although the exact prevalence of sexual assault is unknown, our findings suggest that it is a more common problem than previously appreciated,” they wrote. “Given the high rates ofmorbidity and mortality associated with sexual assault, greater efforts are needed to prevent these events and to ensure that victims receive the timely, evidence-based care they need.”
According to a recent study, the number of sexual assault-related emergency room visits has increased more than tenfold in the past decade.
This disturbing trend is likely due to a variety of factors, including the increasing prevalence of sexual assault in our society and the fact that more victims are coming forward to seek medical treatment.
Sexual assault is a serious crime that can have long-lasting physical and emotional consequences for victims. It is vital that we do everything we can to support victims and prevent sexual assaults from occurring in the first place.
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, please seek help from a trusted friend, family member, or medical professional. You are not alone.