skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 167680 Find in a Library
Title: Physiological Hyperractivity to Stressors in Physical Child Abusers and Individuals at Risk for Being Physically Abusive
Journal: Aggression and Violent Behavior  Volume:1  Issue:4  Dated:(Winter 1996)  Pages:345-358
Author(s): T R McCanne; A H Hagstrom
Date Published: 1996
Page Count: 14
Type: Research (Applied/Empirical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Research on the physiological reactivity of physical child abusers and individuals at risk for being physically abusive is summarized and critiqued.
Abstract: Several theorists have hypothesized that physical child abusers experience physiological hyperreactivity to stressors, particularly stressful child interactions associated with child rearing. Experimental evidence generally supports the physiological hyperreactivity hypothesis, although there are some contradictory and inconsistent results within individual studies and across studies. Research also indicates the physiological hyperreactivity of physical child abusers and those at risk for being physically abusive occurs during a wide variety of stimulus situations, including aversive child-related stimuli, nonaversive child-related stimuli, and aversive non-child-related stimuli and during periods when no overt stimulus is present (resting or baseline periods). Recommendations concerning procedural and methodological improvements are offered to enable future researchers to better address unresolved issues related to the physiological hyperreactivity hypothesis. 50 references and 1 table
Main Term(s): Child victims
Index Term(s): Abused children; Biological influences; Child abuse causes; Crimes against children; Juvenile victims; Psychological influences on crime; Victims of violent crime; Violence causes
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.