Intimate partner violence among female drug users admitted to the general hospital: Screening and prevalence

Clara Caldentey, Judit Tirado-Muñoz, Tessie Ferrer, Francina Fonseca, Paola Rossi, Juan Ignacio Mestre-Pintó, Marta Torrens

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9 Citations (Scopus)


© 2017, Edita Socidrogalcohol. All rights reserved. Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a public health problem worldwide. Several factors have been found to be associated with an increased prevalence of IPV, such as substance use. A cross-sectional study was conducted with the aim of determining the prevalence of IPV among women entering Hospital del Mar (Barcelona) for any medical/ surgical reason, and who had a diagnosis of substance use disorder. Secondly, it was intended to psychometrically validate the Spanish version of the Hurt, Insulted, Threatened with Harm, Screamed (HITS) questionnaire. All patients were assessed by two IPV questionnaires, the Composite Abuse Scale (CAS) and HITS. Out of 52 patients interviewed, 46 answered both questionnaires. According to the CAS questionnaire, 23 patients (50%) experienced IPV at some point in their lives and 11 (23.9%) in the last year. Cannabis consumption was also associated with an increased severity of IPV (95% CI 3.5-28.9, p =.013).According to the HITS questionnaire, there was a IPV prevalence of 39.1% (18 patients) in the last 12 months. HITS had a specificity of 100% and a sensitivity of 78% relative to the CAS questionnaire. A cut-off score x∈ [6,7], derived through ROC analysis, correctly discriminated 91% of the victims and 100% of the non-victims. The results obtained showed that the prevalence of IPV was very high among women who suffered from more than one substance use disorder. Therefore, it is highly recommended to systematically screen for IPV victimization by putting the HITS questionnaire into practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)172-179
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017


  • Intimate partner violence
  • Liaison psychiatry
  • Screening test
  • Substance use disorder
  • Validation


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