When to Test for STDs After Child Sex Abuse

November 1, 2014

You can see how badly your child is suffering emotionally, but could there be another risk that you can’t see that could affect his health now and in the future? If your child has been sexually abused, you need to consider the risk of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

It Is a Risk Every Time a Child Is Sexually Abused

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that testing children for STDs after sexual abuse should occur if:

  • The parent requests testing.
  • Another child in the house tests positive for a STD.
  • There is evidence of genital, oral, or anal penetration.
  • There is evidence of ejaculation.
  • The person who committed the sexual abuse is known to have an STD or is at high risk of having a STD.
  • The child has symptoms of a STD.


All decisions regarding testing should be made on an individual basis, and all testing should be done in such a way as to minimize pain and trauma for the child being tested.

What If the Test Is Positive?

A positive test may be devastating, but it is better to know about your child’s condition so that it can be treated. Talk to your child’s doctor about the best way to treat the disease, and learn more about your child’s rights. Your child may be able to recover damages for the significant effects of the abuse he endured. To learn more about protecting your child in this difficult situation, please fill out our online contact form to schedule a free and confidential meeting with an experienced child sex abuse lawyer.

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