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January 23, 1943

Personality and Sexuality of the Physically Handicapped Woman

JAMA. 1943;121(4):297-298. doi:10.1001/jama.1943.02840040073029

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In this book the authors report a study of the psychosexual development of 100 physically handicapped women. The subjects were 25 women with an orthopedic disability, 25 with spastic paralysis, 25 with chronic heart disease and 25 who had been diagnosed as epileptic. The information was obtained by means of a controlled interview, a medical history and the Rorschach test. On the basis of this information the authors concluded that personality manifestations and disturbances do not correlate with specific physical disturbances. They found that any persistent physical handicap resulted in hyposexuality and psychologic immaturity. They also concluded that in most cases psychosexuality was not an important component in personality formation. Their findings showed that no existent psychologic or psychiatric theory could be used to explain the growth of personality and sexuality of the physically handicapped woman. They therefore concluded that the reaction tendencies which become formalized in childhood determine the

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