top of page
Review Article





Ankita, GK Singh


ABSTRACT: Rape is one of the serious traumas leading to produce the long term and irreparable negative effects like as PTSD i.e. post traumatic stress disorder, depression, suicidal attempts, health issues etc. Sex related crimes are happening in every society and across the worldwide. Often, such crimes cause serious and permanent damage to the physical and mental wellbeing of the victims if taking the form of sexual violence. The effects of such offences are as much serious as that of physical injury. The damage caused by sexual violence demands justice for the safety and preservation of female dignity. The sexual assault victims need post-assault support.  The victims suffer physically, emotionally, psychologically and morally due to sexual violation. So, there is a great need to pay attention towards the mental concerns of the rape victims. The sexual assault victims need immediate medical treatment and examination. Moreover, an emotional support plays a great role in the recovery of victims otherwise lack of such support may lead the victims to suffer from psychological disorders. In this article, different social and psychological problems faced by the rape victims have been reviewed. Along with social and psychological problems, the experience of the survivors in the legal and medical system suffering from various barriers has been reviewed.


KEY WORDS: Sexual assault; Psychological; PTSD; Emergency Contraception; Rape Survivors.


  1. Tamuli RP, Paul B, Mahanta P. A statistical analysis of alleged victims of sexual assault-A retrospective study. J Punjab Acad Forensic Med Toxicol. 2013;13(1):7-13.

  2. Campbell R. The psychological impact of rape victims. American psychologist. 2008 ;63(8):702.

  3. Sarkar J. Mental health assessment of rape offenders. Indian journal of psychiatry. 2013;55(3):235.

  4. Calitz FJ. Psycho-legal challenges facing the mentally retarded rape victim. South African Journal of Psychiatry. 2011;17(3):66-72.

  5. Chabra S, Rai D, Chacko KA. The emotional and psychological aspects of rape. Journal of Evolution of Medical and Dental Sciences. 2014; 3(34):9001-10. DOI: 10.14260/jemds/2014/3159.

  6. Bhate-Deosthali P, Rege S. Denial of safe abortion to survivors of rape in India. Health and human rights. 2019 ;21(2):189.

  7. Campbell R, Townsend SM, Long SM, Kinnison KE, Pulley EM, Adames SB, Wasco SM. Responding to sexual assault victims' medical and emotional needs: A national study of the services provided by SANE programs. Research in nursing & health. 2006;29(5):384-98.

  8. Sleath E, Bull R. A brief report on rape myth acceptance: Differences between police officers, law students, and psychology students in the United Kingdom. Violence and victims. 2015 ;30(1):136-47.

  9. Campbell R. Rape survivors' experiences with the legal and medical systems: Do rape victim advocates make a difference?. Violence against women. 2006 ;12(1):30-45.

  10. Diniz D, Madeiro A, Rosas C. Conscientious objection, barriers, and abortion in the case of rape: a study among physicians in Brazil. Reproductive Health Matters. 2014;22(43):141-8.

  11. Smugar SS, Spina BJ, Merz JF. Informed consent for emergency contraception: variability in hospital care of rape victims. American Journal of Public Health. 2000;90(9):1372.

  12. Schaper YF. Emergency contraception for rape victims: A new face of the old battleground of legal issues in the bi-partisan abortion politics in the United States. Rutgers L. Rec.. 2005;29:1.

  13. Reuters. NCRB data 2018: 1 rape reported every 15 minutes in India [Internet]. India Today; 2020 [cited 2021 Jun 25]. Available from:

  14. Statista Research Department. Total number of rape cases reported in India from 2005 to 2019 [internet]. Statista. 2021 [cited 2020 Jul 27]. available from:

  15. Bullock CM, Beckson M. Male victims of sexual assault: Phenomenology, psychology, physiology. Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law Online. 2011;39(2):197-205.

  16. Davis RC, Brickman E, Baker T. Supportive and unsupportive responses of others to rape victims: Effects on concurrent victim adjustment. American Journal of Community Psychology. 1991;19(3):443-51.

  17. Bhate-Deosthali P, Rege S. Denial of safe abortion to survivors of rape in India. Health and human rights. 2019 ;21(2):189.

  18. Neuman S. The issue of sexual violence against women in contemporary India. 2013.

  19. Harris L, Freccero J, Crittenden C. Sexual violence: medical and psychosocial support. Berkeley: Human Rights Center. 2011.

  20. Foa EB, Rothbaum BO, Riggs DS, Murdock TB. Treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder in rape victims: a comparison between cognitive-behavioral procedures and counseling. Journal of consulting and clinical psychology. 1991 ;59(5):715.

  21. Campbell R, Ahrens CE, Sefl T, Wasco SM, Barnes HE. Social reactions to rape victims: Healing and hurtful effects on psychological and physical health outcomes. Violence and victims. 2001;16(3):287-302.

  22. Bosmans M. Challenges in aid to rape victims: the case of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Essex Human Rights Review. 2007;4(1):1-2.

 To cite this article:

Ankita, Singh GK. A review on the different physical, social and psychological impacts and problems faced by rape survivors . Int. J. Med. Lab. Res. 2021; 6,2:46-54.

bottom of page