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Cuadernos de Medicina Forense

versión On-line ISSN 1988-611Xversión impresa ISSN 1135-7606


FRANCISCO MAIZ, M.L. de  y  SOLANO JAURRIETA, M.A.. Forensic medical examination of elder abuse in the Basque Institute of Legal Medicine (Bizkaia) during 2009, 2010 and 2011. Cuad. med. forense [online]. 2012, vol.18, n.3-4, pp.119-126. ISSN 1988-611X.

Introduction: Elder abuse is more common than people might think. Detecting is complicated because victims seldom report abuse. There is usually a family relationship between aggressor and victim. Only a few studies deal in the forensic area. The main goal of this study is to analyze and to identify the most relevant variables associated to that problem. Materials and methods: A descriptive and retrospective study in the Basque Institute of Legal Medicine (Bizkaia), has been carried out by analyzing 122 medical records: 70 in the Forensic Clinic and 52 in the UVFI. The final sample is composed of victims of both genders older than 65 years of age. The study was conducted between 2009 and 2011. Results: The prevalence rate of elder abuse is .41% among all medical records documenting some kind of violence in the Forensic Clinic, but this prevalence rate rises to 4.3% if only the records of the UVFI. Victims were women and the average age of the 74 years old. In the Forensic Clinic, the son is most often the perpetrator (55.7%); in the UVFI the husband is most often the perpetrator (45.7%). Conclusions: When victims are examined in the Forensic Clinic, forensic medical examination is immediate. Most of victims are suffering from light injuries, which do not require any further medical assistance. According to a court decision, some of the victims will be examined later on in the UVFI. In these cases are suffering from a significant problems and even, in some cases, from adjustment disorders.

Palabras clave : Prevalence rate; Elder abuse; Domestic violence; Forensic medical examination.

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