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Serious Child Abuse on the Rise

A national study released Monday shows serious child abuse, including hospitalizations and deaths, are on the rise.The report published in the Pediatrics journal was compiled from about 2,500 hospitals and was conducted from 1997 to 2009.The study noted that 54 percent of the cases accounted for children younger than 12 months. Doctors in Columbia say most cases they see are also with kids younger than five.Doctors say in a lot of their cases, the parent just loses control.”Usually it’s a parent that got upset and was too violent with their child, but occasionally we do see life-threatening sorts of injuries from child abuse,” said. Dr. Adam Wheeler of Tiger Pediatrics.According to the Missouri Department of Social Services, the state has seen an increase in abuse cases just like the rest of the country. In 2006, the child abuse neglect hotline received almost 51,400 reports. In 2010, calls increased by nearly 5,500. Hospitalization from abuse also rose almost five percent in all cases.Pediatricians in Columbia say they see a child abuse case about once a week and injuries could be dangerous for very young children.”Injuries tend to be more severe also because the size of their head is bigger relative to the size of their body,” said Dr. Wheeler. “They tend to have more injuries of the neck and the brain.”According to the study, the most common injuries were fractures, cuts and brain injuries.

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