Injuries of Women Surviving Intimate Partner Strangulation and Subsequent Emergency Health Care Seeking: An Integrative Evidence Review

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Abstract

Introduction:

Nonfatal strangulation by a current or former intimate partner is a distinct mechanism of violence with the potential for severe injury or death. As nonfatal strangulation has gained recognition for its significant medical and legal implications, there have been multiple calls for nursing and other health care providers to improve practices related to strangulation screening, assessment, and treatment. Given that US estimates suggest higher prevalence of strangulation of women than of men, this integrative evidence review examines existing literature related to women's injuries and their subsequent experiences in seeking health care after surviving intimate partner strangulation.

Methods:

Following PRISMA guidelines, 5 electronic databases were searched, ultimately resulting in 13 articles for inclusion.

Results:

Overall, nonfatal intimate partner strangulation was associated with multiple negative physical and psychological outcomes for women, although only 5% to 69% of strangled women sought health care in studies reporting this finding.

Discussion:

Nonprobability sampling, participant self-reports, and relatively small sample sizes were frequently encountered limitations across studies. Heterogeneity of women's ages and race/ethnicities also limited comparisons. However, existing research provides a beginning framework to support practice and future inquiry.

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