The Use of Medical Clowns as a Psychological Distress Buffer During Anogenital Examination of Sexually Abused Children

Dafna Tener*, Nessia Lang-Franco, Shoshi Ofir, Rachel Lev-Wiesel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

This quasi-experimental study examined the effects of medical clowns on psychological distress during pediatric anogenital examinations. A convenience sample of 30 allegedly sexually abused minors ranging in age from 1 to 17 years (M = 10.57, SD = 4.71) was recruited among children at a medical center for sexually abused children in Israel. Parents and children completed self-report questionnaires consisting of two measures: the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms Scale and an evaluation scale regarding the role of and experience with medical clowns. Results indicated that children accompanied by a medical clown during examination expressed less fear, reported lower pain levels, and had fewer invasive thoughts.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)12-22
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Loss and Trauma
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Received 23 May 2010; accepted 17 February 2011. This study was supported (in part) by Grant 000005561-3 from the Chief Scientist Office of the Ministry of Health, Israel. Address correspondence to Dafna Tener, TENE Center for Sexually Abused Children, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Poria-Padeh Medical Center, Tiberias, Israel 15208. E-mail: [email protected]

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