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J Trauma Stress. 2003 Apr;16(2):175-86.

Psychosocial and pharmacological interventions for child crime victims.

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  • 1Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15212, USA.


Children may develop a variety of difficulties following victimization, including posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), other anxiety symptoms, depressive disorders, externalizing symptoms, or substance use disorders. Some children appear to be resilient in the face of victimization and do not report significant difficulties. A growing number of treatment studies for child abuse victims has supported the efficacy of trauma-focused cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT); however, more research is needed to determine the critical components and optimal dosage of CBT, and to evaluate the efficacy of this approach for other groups of child crime victims. Psychopharmacological treatments are widely used for childhood PTSD, but little research has evaluated such treatments. Treatment guidelines and future directions are discussed.

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