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No To Hattatsu. 2011 Sep;43(5):345-51.

[Preliminary evidence of neurobiological and behavioral consequences of exposure to childhood maltreatment on regional brain development].

[Article in Japanese]

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Department of Child Development, Faculty of Life Sciences, Kumamoto University, Kumamoto.


In recent years, the topic of child abuse as an issue facing Japanese society has gained considerable attention with regard to the field of medicine and education and also in scenarios that relate to child care. The definition of child abuse includes abusing children verbally or psychologically, and is not limited to abusing children physically such as beating, sexual abuse, or neglect. Recent studies have revealed that emotional trauma during childhood development could be much more difficult to treat than physical abuse. Severe abuse during childhood can cause abnormal brain development and have a negative impact later in life. In this review, I will introduce the mechanisms of brain damage due to child abuse with consideration of how and when child abuse can have an impact on the victims' brains. The information presented is based on a collaborative study with the Psychiatry Department at Harvard University on the relationship between brain functions and the human mind.

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