Timing of the medical examination.J Child Sex Abus. 2011 Sep; 20(5):505-20.JC
The medical examination of the sexually abused child may have evidentiary, medical, and therapeutic purposes, and the timing of the examination requires consideration of each of these objectives. In cases of acute sexual assault, emergent examinations may be needed to identify injury, collect forensic evidence, and provide infection and pregnancy prophylaxis. Alternately, most sexually abused children are not identified immediately after assault, and the timing of the examination needs to balance physical and emotional issues with the availability of qualified examiners. In all cases, the best interests of the child should be paramount.