This case illustrates the sexual exploitation of women with schizophrenia. The patient was a woman with severe mental illness who was alienated from her family and who, between her many hospital admissions, lived essentially on the street. Her personal vulnerability and lack of social supports exposed her to repeated sexual and physical assaults until, at the age of 50, she was sheltered in a long-term psychiatric institution. The clinical implication is that the victimization of the severely mentally ill (men as well as women) is under-recognized. Training in self-protection is only now beginning to be included in treatment programs for schizophrenia.
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