Neurologists should ask patients about abuse

January 25, 2012, American Academy of Neurology

A new position statement issued by the American Academy of Neurology calls on neurologists to begin screening their patients for abusive or violent treatment by family, caretakers or others. The position statement is published in the January 25, 2012, online issue of Neurology.. Types of abuse include elder abuse, child abuse, sexual abuse, financial abuse, emotional abuse, bullying, cyberbullying and violence.

"Neurologists see patients with that may make them more susceptible to abuse or neglect," said lead author Elliott A. Schulman, MD, of Lankenau Medical Center in Wynnewood, Penn., and a Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology. "They also see patients with neurologic issues that may be either directly or indirectly related to mistreatment."

More than 90 percent of all injuries from occur to the head, face or neck region, and can lead to , according to the position statement. People with neurologic disorders such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease or stroke may be at higher risk for abuse and neglect.

"By routinely asking about violence and abuse, the neurologist increases the opportunity for both identifying ongoing abuse and intervening when appropriate," Schulman said. "In addition to further physical and emotional harm, consequences of not asking about abuse might include failure of treatments and, when children are exposed to abuse, perpetuation of the cycle of abuse from generation to generation."

The position statement outlines 10 principles of intervention by the neurologist when meeting with patients, beginning with integrating questions about abuse into the medical history and routinely screening all patients for past and ongoing violence.

The Academy is also offering free training to members interested in seeking to help address domestic violence issues in their communities.

Explore further: Policy: Sex abuse by doctors 'profound betrayal'

Related Stories

Policy: Sex abuse by doctors 'profound betrayal'

July 19, 2011
(AP) -- The nation's largest pediatricians' group has issued its first policy on protecting children from sexual abuse by doctors, citing a recent Delaware case and urging medical facilities to screen employees for previous ...

Recommended for you

Research reveals atomic-level changes in ALS-linked protein

January 18, 2018
For the first time, researchers have described atom-by-atom changes in a family of proteins linked to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a group of brain disorders known as frontotemporal dementia and degenerative diseases ...

Fragile X finding shows normal neurons that interact poorly

January 18, 2018
Neurons in mice afflicted with the genetic defect that causes Fragile X syndrome (FXS) appear similar to those in healthy mice, but these neurons fail to interact normally, resulting in the long-known cognitive impairments, ...

How your brain remembers what you had for dinner last night

January 17, 2018
Confirming earlier computational models, researchers at University of California San Diego and UC San Diego School of Medicine, with colleagues in Arizona and Louisiana, report that episodic memories are encoded in the hippocampus ...

Recording a thought's fleeting trip through the brain

January 17, 2018
University of California, Berkeley neuroscientists have tracked the progress of a thought through the brain, showing clearly how the prefrontal cortex at the front of the brain coordinates activity to help us act in response ...

Midbrain 'start neurons' control whether we walk or run

January 17, 2018
Locomotion comprises the most fundamental movements we perform. It is a complex sequence from initiating the first step, to stopping when we reach our goal. At the same time, locomotion is executed at different speeds to ...

Miles Davis is not Mozart: The brains of jazz and classical pianists work differently

January 16, 2018
Keith Jarret, world-famous jazz pianist, once answered in an interview when asked if he would ever be interested in doing a concert where he would play both jazz and classical music: "No, that's hilarious. [...] It's like ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.