Child abuse and the pediatric surgeon: A position statement from the Trauma Committee, the Board of Governors and the Membership of the American Pediatric Surgical Association

Mauricio A. Escobar, Kim G. Wallenstein, Emily R. Christison-Lagay, Jessica A. Naiditch, John K. Petty

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Background: The pediatric surgeon is in a unique position to assess, stabilize, and manage a victim of child physical abuse (formerly nonaccidental trauma [NAT]) in the setting of a formal trauma system. Methods: The American Pediatric Surgical Association (APSA) endorses the concept of child physical abuse as a traumatic disease that justifies the resource utilization of a trauma system to appropriately evaluate and manage this patient population including evaluation by pediatric surgeons. Results: APSA recommends the implementation of a standardized tool to screen for child physical abuse at all state designated trauma or ACS verified trauma and children's surgery hospitals. APSA encourages the admission of a suspected child abuse patient to a surgical trauma service because of the potential for polytrauma and increased severity of injury and to provide reliable coordination of services. Nevertheless, APSA recognizes the need for pediatric surgeons to participate in a multidisciplinary team including child abuse pediatricians, social work, and Child Protective Services (CPS) to coordinate the screening, evaluation, and management of patients with suspected child physical abuse. Finally, APSA recognizes that if a pediatric surgeon suspects abuse, a report to CPS for further investigation is mandated by law. Conclusion: APSA supports data accrual on abuse screening and diagnosis into a trauma registry, the NTDB and the Pediatric ACS TQIP® for benchmarking purposes and quality improvement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1277-1285
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pediatric Surgery
Volume54
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2019

Fingerprint

Child Abuse
Pediatrics
Wounds and Injuries
Surgeons
Benchmarking
Multiple Trauma
Quality Improvement
Social Work
Registries

Keywords

  • Child abuse
  • Child maltreatment
  • Nonaccidental trauma (NAT)
  • Pediatric surgery
  • Pediatric trauma systems

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

Cite this

Child abuse and the pediatric surgeon : A position statement from the Trauma Committee, the Board of Governors and the Membership of the American Pediatric Surgical Association. / Escobar, Mauricio A.; Wallenstein, Kim G.; Christison-Lagay, Emily R.; Naiditch, Jessica A.; Petty, John K.

In: Journal of Pediatric Surgery, Vol. 54, No. 7, 07.2019, p. 1277-1285.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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