Evaluating for suspected child abuse: Conditions that predispose to bleeding

Shannon L. Carpenter, Thomas C. Abshire, James D. Anderst, Jeffrey Hord, Gary Crouch, Gregory Hale, Brigitta Mueller, Zora Rogers, Patricia Shearer, Eric Werner, Cindy W. Christian, James Crawford-Jakubiak, Emalee Flaherty, John M. Leventhal, James Lukefahr, Robert Sege

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Child abuse might be suspected when children present with cutaneous bruising, intracranial hemorrhage, or other manifestations of bleeding. In these cases, it is necessary to consider medical conditions that predispose to easy bleeding/bruising. When evaluating for the possibility of bleeding disorders and other conditions that predispose to hemorrhage, the pediatrician must consider the child's presenting history, medical history, and physical examination findings before initiating a laboratory investigation. Many medical conditions can predispose to easy bleeding. Before ordering laboratory tests for a disease, it is useful to understand the biochemical basis and clinical presentation of the disorder, condition prevalence, and test characteristics. This technical report reviews the major medical conditions that predispose to bruising/bleeding and should be considered when evaluating for abusive injury.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e1357-e1373
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Bruising
  • Inherited coagulation disorders
  • Intracranial hemorrhage
  • Nonaccidental trauma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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