Objective: This study was undertaken to describe patient, assault, and examination characteristics associated with compliance with follow-up in sexual assault victims.
Study design: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of consecutive women presenting to an urban hospital after sexual assault over a 36-month period. We compared those who did and did not follow-up by using standardized history, examination, and data collection forms.
Results: Eight hundred twelve women met inclusion criteria; 288 (35.5%) attended follow-up. Young age (odds ratio [OR] = 2.70), assault at home (OR = 1.90), amnesia (OR = 1.80), alcohol use (OR = 1.55), genital trauma (OR = 1.55), and receipt of postexamination medications (OR = 1.87) were associated with greater follow-up; homelessness (OR = 0.30), psychiatric diagnosis (OR = 0.34), assault by an intimate partner (OR = 0.47), and cocaine use (OR = 0.29) with less.
Conclusion: Although only 35.5% of sexual assault victims seek follow-up, we found many factors positively and negatively associated with this. These findings may inform care strategies designed to improve follow-up for women who are at risk for significant sequelae.