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Table 1 Characteristics of included studies

From: Insufficient evidence for the use of a physical examination to detect maltreatment in children without prior suspicion: a systematic review

First author Year of publication Country Type of study Setting Study aim Sample size Age Sex distribution (%) male/female Index test Reference standard
Afifi [27] 2003 Egypt Cross-sectional Preparatory and secondary school students from a rural community, selected by random cluster sampling To identify the prevalence and underlying risk factors of child maltreatment 555 12–18 years; mean age 15.6 ±1.5 years 63/37 General physical examination by physician, specifically including signs of previous or recent physical abuse Self-report of the child in combination with positive signs upon physical examination
Palazzi [28] 2005 Italy Cross-sectional All children 0–14 years presenting in 19 emergency departments To identify the prevalence and associated risk factors of suspected child maltreatment 10,175 0–14 years; mean age 4.8 ±3.9 years 57/43 Complete physical examination whenever possible, especially in younger children Six-point suspicion index for child maltreatment attributed by an expert panel of a local child health team in collaboration with research assistants, based on routine assessments
Rosenberg [29] 1982 USA Prospective, 1-year follow-up A randomly enrolled sample of children 0–2 years visiting an emergency department To prospectively evaluate a brief screening assessment for child maltreatment 476 0–2 years 55/45 Caregiver undresses child, assessment by nurse for being unkempt, having a bald occiput, and the presence of physical bruises, burns or bites Registered as maltreated at the CPSi (the Department of Social Services) at 1-year follow-up
  1. iCPS = Child Protective Services.