Wednesday, October 31, 2007

ACE Study - Major Findings - Adverse Childhood Experiences

ACE Study - Major Findings - Adverse Childhood Experiences: "Childhood abuse, neglect, and exposure to other traumatic stressors which we term adverse childhood experiences (ACE) are common. Almost two-thirds of our study participants reported at least one ACE, and more than one in five reported three or more ACE. The short- and long-term outcomes of these childhood exposures include a multitude of health and social problems. The ACE Study uses the ACE Score, which is a count of the total number of ACE respondents reported. The ACE Score is used to assess the total amount of stress during childhood and has demonstrated that as the number of ACE increase, the risk for the following health problems increases in a strong and graded fashion:

alcoholism and alcohol abuse
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
fetal death
health-related quality of life
illicit drug use
ischemic heart disease (IHD)
liver disease
risk for intimate partner violence
multiple sexual partners
sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
suicide attempts
unintended pregnancies

In addition, the ACE Study has also demonstrated that the ACE Score has a strong and graded relationship to health-related behaviors and outcomes during childhood and adolescence including early initiation of smoking, sexual activity, and illicit drug use, adolescent pregnancies, and suicide attempts. Finally, as the number of ACE increases the number of co-occurring or “co-morbid” conditions increases."

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