In a Forbes article by Nicole Fisher, the founder and President of Health & Human Rights Strategies, a health care and human rights-focused advising firm in Washington, D.C, she found that women experiencing intimate partner violence (IPV) have an increased risk of sustaining a traumatic brain injury (TBI). However, there is very little research being done globally on the effects of TBI on IPV victims.
Most of the research is concentrated on people participating in sports and the military, even though “IPV is the most common form of violence against women in the world, with nearly 1 in 3 women ages 15 or older experiencing physical or sexual IPV.” Symptoms of TBI can include problems with “concentration, memory, headaches, depression, anxiety, fatigue, and sleep,” symptoms that are prevalent in most IPV victims.
Based on Fisher’s research, “up to 90% of injuries sustained in IPV are to the head, face, and neck,” which warrants focus and support to be directed to women facing IPV.
Reasons for the lack of research of TBI on IPV victims include, amongst others;
- a general lack of research on women
- social marginalisation
- weak social support networks
According to Fisher, “[t]here is a growing awareness amongst the general population that invisible injuries … are real and dangerous, and they can be life changing due to the cognitive, emotional and physical challenges associated with a TBI, [but] the next step is making this same realisation for women survivors of IPV-related TBI.”
To read the full article click here.