Author(s): Stirling J Jr American A, Stirling J Jr American A
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Abstract The condition widely known as Munchausen syndrome by proxy comprises both physical abuse and medical neglect and is also a form of psychological maltreatment. Although it is a relatively rare form of child abuse, pediatricians need to have a high index of suspicion when faced with seemingly inexplicable findings or treatment failures. The fabrication of a pediatric illness is a form of child abuse and not merely a mental health disorder, and there is a possibility of an extremely poor prognosis if the child is left in the home. In this statement, factors are identified that may help the physician recognize this insidious type of child abuse that occurs in a medical setting, and recommendations are provided for physicians regarding when to report a case to their state's child protective service agency.
This article was published in Pediatrics
and referenced in Journal of Child and Adolescent Behavior