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Clin Evid (Online). 2009 Feb 13;2009. pii: 1013.

Intimate partner violence towards women.

Author information

  • Collaborative Research Unit, Cook County Hospital/Department of Internal Medicine, Rush Medical College, Chicago, IL, USA.



Between 10-69% of women may have been physically or sexually assaulted by a partner at some stage, with assault rates against men reported at about a quarter of the rate against women. In at least half of people studied, the problem lasts for 5 years or more. Women reporting intimate partner violence (IPV) are more likely than other women to complain of poor physical or mental health, and of disability.


We conducted a systematic review and aimed to answer the following clinical question: What are the effects of interventions initiated by healthcare professionals aimed at female victims of intimate partner violence? We searched: Medline, Embase, The Cochrane Library, and other important databases up to July 2008 (Clinical Evidence reviews are updated periodically, please check our website for the most up-to-date version of this review).


We found 25 systematic reviews, RCTs, or observational studies that met our inclusion criteria. We performed a GRADE evaluation of the quality of evidence for interventions.


In this systematic review we present information relating to the effectiveness and safety of the following interventions: advocacy; career counselling plus critical consciousness awareness; cognitive behavioural counselling; cognitive trauma therapy; counselling; nurse support and guidance; peer support groups; safety planning; and shelters.

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