Author(s): Akinlusi FM, Rabiu KA, Olawepo TA, Adewunmi AA, Ottun TA,
Abstract Share this page
Abstract BACKGROUND: Cases of sexual assault are increasingly reported. However, Nigerian researchers have not given adequate attention to this subject despite its attendant social, physical and psychological consequences.This study assessed survivors' characteristics, circumstances of assault and treatment offered with a view to reducing the incidence as well as improving evaluation and management. METHODS: A retrospective review of survivors' case records at Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, between January 2008 and December 2012. Data was analysed using the Epi-info 3.5 statistical software of the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta U S A. RESULTS: Of the 39,770 new gynaecological cases during this period, 304 were alleged sexual assault giving an incidence of 0.76\% among hospital gynaecological consultations. Only 287 case notes had sufficient information for statistical analysis. Of these, 83.6\% were below 19 years, 73.1\% knew their assailants (majority were neighbours), most assaults (54.6\%) occurred in the neighbours' homes and over 60\% of victims presented after 24 hours of assault. Although 77.3\% were assaulted at daytime, teenagers were likely to be raped during the day and non-teenagers at night (P < 0.001). Threat and physical violence were mostly used to overcome victims. Seventy three point six percent had Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) screening with one positive at onset. Post Exposure Prophylaxis for HIV was given in 29.4\% of those eligible and emergency contraception in 22.4\% of post-menarcheal victims (n = 125). There were neither referrals for psychotherapy nor forensic specimen collected. No record of post-assault conception or HIV infection was found during follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: Adolescents remain the most vulnerable requiring life skills training for protection. Survivors delay in presenting for care. Therefore, public enlightenment on the benefits of early interventions and comprehensive care of survivors with the use of standardized protocols are recommended.
This article was published in BMC Womens Health
and referenced in Journal of Womens Health Care