The Source for Crime and Justice Data

View Record Details

Pub. Type Report
Title Bruising as a Forensic Marker of Physical Elder Abuse
Author(s) Wiglesworth, Aileen
Austin, Raciela
Corona, Maria
Mosqueda, Laura
Subtitle/Series Name Final Technical Report
Pub. Date 2009
Abstract The study found that bruises which occurred as a result of physical elder mistreatment were often large (greater than 5 cm) and were located on the face, the lateral right arm, or the posterior torso. Forty-eight (72 percent) of the older adults who were determined to have been physically abused within 30 days prior to the examination had bruises. Eighty-nine of the 155 examined bruises (60 percent), were reported by the older adults to be inflicted, 26 (14.2 percent) were accidental, and 40 (25.8 percent) were of unknown cause. When the current study population was compared to a group of elders in an earlier study who had not been abused, the physically abused elders were found to have significantly larger bruises, and more of them reported the cause of their bruises. Based on these findings, older adults with bruises should be asked about the cause of the bruises in order to determine whether physical abuse occurred. Reports of bruising inflicted by others should be reported to adult protective services, the police, or other investigating agency. Based on self-reports and the medical exam, an expert panel confirmed physical abuse. Findings were compared with the results of an earlier study of accidental bruising in older adults. Data obtained were age; sex; ethnicity; functional status; medical conditions; cognitive status; history of falls; bruise size, location, and recall of cause; and response to the Revised Conflict Tactics Scale items and Elder Abuse Inventory. source
Issue/No. NCJ 226457
Producer University of California, Irvine, School of Medicine
Place of Production Irvine, CA

Related Studies

This publication is related to the following dataset(s):