Understanding how intentional sexual injuries are inflicted on older adults is a growing concern as the population over 65 increases. This study contributes critical information to guide the identification of physical and psychologic markers of elder sexual abuse to be integrated by law enforcement as forensic medical evidence. Findings from this study will be used to educate health care professions about elder sexual abuse, which we hope will promote early detection. Policy implications for monitoring and protecting elders needs to include criminal background checks on staff caring for elders in nursing homes or performing services in the homes of elders. Building knowledge about the unique psychologic and physical characteristics of sexually traumatized elders, outcomes (particularly exacerbation of comorbid conditions and death), and the effectiveness of interventions is essential for future research and policy development. © 2005 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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