Ewha Med J.  1996 Jun;19(2):173-183. 10.12771/emj.1996.19.2.173.

Psychiatric Problem in Rape Victims

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, Ewha Womans University, Korea.


The purpose of this study is to investigate the psychiatric problems of rape victims.
The author observed the psychiatric symptoms of the 10 women patients who visited psychiatric clinics immediately after rape after trauma, and made a related survey of 61 other 61 female outpatients in order to compare psychiatric symptoms of those of them who reported the history of rape trauma and those of the others who did not have such history.
Results are given as follows : 1) The most frequent psychiatric diagnosis of the victims of rather recent day's rape was posttraumatic stress disorder(4/10), followed by depression(2/10) and Schizoaffective disorder(2/10). The most frequent perpetrator was unknown person(8/10). 2) 49.2% of the other 61 patients of psychiatric clinic reported the history of abuse, including 26.2% and 36.1% of them reporting sexual abuse and physical abuse, respectively. 3) Sexual dysfunction was reported in 58.3% of the rape victims, who generally showed a tendency toward the high level of anxiety, hostility and paranoid symptoms. 4) The high scored dissociation was observed in rape victims but not in non-abuse group.
The rape trauma appears to be responsible for some psychiatric symptoms, or at least to be a precipitating factor of psychiatric disorders. The author also confirmed that aftermath of the rape trauma can continue rather perennially, for years after trauma or even for life ling.


Rape; Sexual function; Psychiatric symptom
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