A Simple Multidisciplinary Approach to Strangulation that Doubled both Forensic Medical Examinations and Reports to Law Enforcement

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90 Minutes

Originally Aired
April 21, 2022

Kathy Bell
Kathy Bell
Catherine Rossi
Catherine Rossi

The Tulsa Police Department coordinated a multi-agency community approach to address the consequences of the violent act of strangulation and promote the availability of medical examinations for patients. This initiative included a one-hour educational offering on the potential negative ramifications for patients and the correct procedures for all its law enforcement officers to utilize in strangulation/domestic violence encounters. This initiative highlighted recent research from The Better Tomorrow Network Women’s Health Study which demonstrated that posttraumatic stress symptoms in patients were universal six weeks after reporting strangulation as a part of their sexual assault. A pocket-sized strangulation awareness card was created and provided to all individuals experiencing domestic violence or strangulation. Within less than one year, the number of medical exams conducted, and the number of domestic strangulations reported to law enforcement doubled. It also unexpectedly doubled the number of arrests and resulting cases filed by prosecutors.


As a result of this webinar, participants will be better able to:

  • Describe the prevalence of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and its correlation to strangulation in sexual assault patients. 
  • Identify three common symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
  • Describe the myth reliance on observation of injury to necessitate medical examination and the importance of described symptoms versus injury observation.
  • Identify four key members in the multidisciplinary response to strangulation.


EVAWI is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing to provide Continuing Education contact hours for nurses (Provider #15641). 

Registered Nurses may purchase 1.5 contact hours after completing this webinar.

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