The Relationship Between Childhood Adverse Experiences and Disability Due to Physical Health Problems in a Community Sample of Women
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The goal of this study was to examine the association of physical and sexual abuse in childhood, poverty, parental substance abuse problems and parental psychiatric problems with disability due to physical health problems in a community sample of women. We included 4,243 women aged 15-64 years from the Ontario Mental Health Supplement in the analysis. The associations were tested by multiple logistic regression. Ten percent of women had a disability due to physical health problems. Among women with a disability, approximately 40% had been abused while growing up. After controlling for income and age, disability showed the strongest association with childhood physical abuse, parental education less than high school and parental psychiatric disorder. The association with child sexual abuse was not significant. Given the high correlation between abuse and disability due to physical health problems, it is important to investigate approaches to identify women who are at increased risk of subsequent impairment.
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