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Dating Violence among Male and Female Youth seeking Emergency Department Care
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    To determine prevalence and correlates of dating violence, dating victimization, and dating aggression among males and females age 14–20 seeking emergency department (ED) care.


    Systematic sampling of subjects age 14–20 seeking care at a single large academic ED between 9/2010- 3/2013. Participants completed a computerized, self-administered, cross-sectional survey of demographics, dating violence from physical abuse measures of the Conflict in Adolescent Dating Relationships Inventory, associated behaviors, and ED health service use. Separate analyses were conducted for males and females.


    4389 youth (86.1% participation rate) were screened, and 4089 (mean age 17.5 years, 58% female) were eligible for analysis. Almost 1 in 5 females (n= 215, 18.4%) and 1 in 8 males (n= 212, 12.5%) reported past year dating violence. Of females, 10.6% reported dating victimization, and 14.6% dating aggression, while of males, 11.7% reported dating victimization, and 4.9% reported dating aggression. Multivariate analyses showed variables associated with any male dating violence were African American race (AOR 2.26, CI 1.54–3.32), alcohol misuse (AOR 1.03, CI 1.00–1.06), illicit drug misuse (AOR 2.38, CI 1.68–3.38), and depression (AOR 2.13, CI 1.46–3.10); any female dating violence was associated with African-American race (AOR 1.68, CI 1.25–2.25), public assistance (AOR 1.64, CI 1.28–2.09), grades D and below (AOR 1.62, CI 1.07–2.43), alcohol misuse (AOR 1.04, CI 1.02–1.07), illicit drug misuse (AOR 2.85, CI 2.22–3.66), depression (AOR 1.86, CI 1.42–2.44), and any past year ED visit for intentional injury (AOR 2.64, CI 1.30–5.40).


    Nearly 1 of 6 male and female adolescents seeking ED care report recent dating violence, and health disparities remain among this population. Dating violence was strongly associated with alcohol, illicit drug misuse, and depression, and correlated with prior ED service utilization among female youth. ED interventions should consider addressing these associated health conditions as well as improving screening protocols to address dating violence among male and female youth.

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    5R49CE002099/CE/NCIPC CDC HHS/United States
    AA018122/AA/NIAAA NIH HHS/United States
    R01 AA018122/AA/NIAAA NIH HHS/United States
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