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 Health  Vol.9 No.10 , September 2017
Epidemiological and Clinical Aspects of Domestic Violence in Senegal
Abstract: Introduction: Despite being under-reported, domestic violence remains a significant challenge in Senegal. The aim of this study is to provide a descriptive analysis of the epidemiological and clinical factors characterizing domestic violence in Senegal. Methodology: A descriptive and retrospectively observational study was conducted. The data was collected from the court records of female victims of physical and/or sexual violence registered from 2006 to 2015. Female victims of physical and/or sexual violence at the hands of their husbands who had a court record at one of Senegal’s high courts during this period were also included. All records that met the inclusion criteria were selected for the study, and the data was analyzed using Epi Info 3.3.2. Results: According to the court records of 148 female victims of domestic violence, the average age of the victims was 30.6 ± 10.1 years. More than 3/4 (76.4%) of the victims were housekeepers, 82.4% of whom were uneducated. The average age of the perpetrators was 40.4 ± 11.4 years, and they were self-employed in the informal sector in 47.3% of the cases. Additionally, more than 3/4 (78.4%) of the perpetrators were uneducated. Eleven women (8% of the victims), were abused while pregnant. Physical violence was predominant (95.3%), while those associated with sexual assault accounted for 4.7% of cases. Of the 7 recorded cases of sexual violence, 3 were cases of unwanted sexual touching, and all cases of physical violence were cases of assault and battery. The violence took place at the home of the perpetrators in 81.8% of cases. In 84.7% of the cases, victims received treatment and care within 24 hours or less. Among the victims, 73% showed clinical lesions. Contusions, hematomas and penetrating wounds were most frequent, representing 23.1%; 19.4% and 13.9% of cases respectively. Conclusion: Despite the low number of cases registered in the judicial system in the past ten years, much more violence is occurring without being denounced by the victims. Therefore, it seems appropriate to increase awareness within the community and break sociocultural barriers that hinder the recognition of women’s rights in the couple.
Cite this paper: Leye, M. , Seck, I. , Faye, A. , Diongue, M. , Ka, O. , Ndeye, M. and Dia, A. (2017) Epidemiological and Clinical Aspects of Domestic Violence in Senegal. Health, 9, 1404-1415. doi: 10.4236/health.2017.910103.
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