July 1978

Penile Trauma as a Sign of Child Abuse

Author Affiliations

The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia 34th and Civic Center Blvd Philadelphia, PA 19104

Am J Dis Child. 1978;132(7):719-721. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1978.02120320079019

Since Kempe et al1 first coined the phrase "the battered child syndrome" in 1962, a number of clinical signs associated with child abuse have been described and reviewed.1-5 However, in an article in this Journal (129:1265, 1975), Kempe urged members of the medical community to identify additional signs of child abuse that might help improve diagnostic acumen. Although O'Neill et al5 parenthetically noted that six of their 110 cases involved genital injury, a series of cases of child abuse involving penile trauma has never, to our knowledge, been fully described. Six such cases are reported here in the interest of facilitating the prompt and accurate diagnosis of child abuse and/or neglect, protecting such children from further injury, and identifying caretakers who are in urgent need of support and rehabilitation.

Report of Cases.—Case 1.—A 14-month-old male infant was first admitted to The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia with

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