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Compr Psychiatry. 2013 Oct;54(7):856-64. doi: 10.1016/j.comppsych.2013.03.014. Epub 2013 Apr 15.

Childhood maltreatment profile in a clinical population in China: a further analysis with existing data of an epidemiologic survey.

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Shanghai Mental Health Center, Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200030, PR China.


To determine the lifetime prevalence and diverse profiles of types of childhood maltreatment (CM) in a high-risk clinical sample using standardized assessment tools (Child Trauma Questionnaire, CTQ) in China, Shanghai, 2090 subjects were sampled from the Shanghai Mental Health Centre. Personality disorder (PD) was assessed using the Personality Diagnostic Questionnaire (PDQ-4+) and subjects were interviewed using the Structured Clinical Interview (SCID-II). CTQ was used to assess CM in five domains (emotional abuse, EA; physical abuse, PA; sexual abuse, SA; emotional neglect, EN; and physical neglect, PN). The prevalence estimate of EA in the sample is 22.2%, followed by 17.8% of PA, and 12.5% of SA. The prevalence estimate was more frequent in PN (65.0%) and in EN (34.0%) than in childhood abuse (EA, PA and SA). It seems that males reported more PA and females reported more SA, the older subjects reported more neglect and the younger subjects reported more abuse. There was a higher prevalence of EA and SA in borderline PD patients (44.4%, 22.5%), PA in antisocial PD patients (38.9%). Multi-PD patients reported more forms of CM in childhood. Additionally, factor analysis of CTQ items confirmed factorial validity by identifying a five-factor structure that explained 50% of the total variance. These findings support the view that prevalence of CM was commonly experienced in clinical population during their childhood, especially for subjects with PDs. Factorial validity in PN needs to be further improved, and can in part be culturally explained.

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