Jornal de Pediatria
Print version ISSN 0021-7557
PASCOLAT, Gilberto et al. Physical abuse: the profile of aggressor and child victim. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2001, vol.77, n.1, pp.35-40. ISSN 0021-7557. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0021-75572001000100010.
Objective: To establish the profile of children who suffer abuse and of abuse perpetrators. Method: 225 cases of confirmed child-abuse (SOS Criança - Curitiba) were studied in 1998; a protocol with queries to analyze the child and the abuser was applied. Results: The following patterns were observed: 56% of the children were in school age; 59.6% were the first child of the couple; 84.4% were natural offspring; and 71.1% of the children had a satisfactory school record. Multiple injuries (38.2%) were found on the victims’ bodies, mostly bruises (37.8%). The main aggressor was the mother (42.2%); 25.8% of them said that the reason for the violence was disciplining the child; 72% of the mothers denied the use of alcohol. Conclusion: The children who suffer more from physical abuse, according to the study, are first-born children of married parents, between 5 and 11 years old; their schooling level is compatible with their age. The mother, with her own hands, is the main aggressor; she normally leaves bruises in several parts of the victim's body, with the objective of educating, or setting limits to the child.