Korean J Psychosom Med.  2016 Dec;24(2):208-216. 10.0000/kjpm.2016.24.2.208.

Psychiatric Symptoms Among Female Adult Victims of Sexual Molestation : Comparison with Rape Victims

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Busan Paik Hospital, Inje University, Busan, Korea. gabriel.jdu@gmail.com


According to the recent Korean National Police Agency report, rape victims were 17.1%, but sexual molestation victims were more than the rape victims by 78.0%. Despite many international reports about the occurrence of severe psychiatric symptoms in sexual molestation victims, there is no domestic research. Therefore in this study, we investigated psychiatric symptoms of sexual molestation victims, and we also compared it with psychiatric symptoms in rape victims.
58 women who visited Busan Smile Center within 3months after sexual violence were the study subjects. Questionnaire about sociodemographic and sexual violence related characteristics were retrospectively investigated. Of the psychiatric symptoms, Beck Depression Inventory(BDI), Beck Anxiety Inventory(BAI) for severity of depression and anxiety, and Impact of Event Scale-Revised(IES-R) to check the presence of posttraumatic stress disorder(PTSD) symptoms were used.
Of 58 sexual violence victims, sexual molestation victims were 36(62.1%) and rape victims were 22(37.9%). In sexual molestation victims, 80.6% had more than moderate severity of depression, 83.3% had more than moderate severity of anxiety, and 94.4% had significant scores at PTSD screening test. Compared with rape victims' psychiatric symptoms(each 95.5%, 95.5%, 95.5%) there were no significant difference.
The majority of sexual molestation victims were also accompanied by depression, anxiety and PTSD symptoms as rape victims. There results suggest that appropriate assessment and early treatment for psychiatric symptom must be made in the early stage of injury in sexual molestation victims.


Sexual violence; Sexual molestation; Rape; Depression; Anxiety; Posttraumatic stress
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