Male survivors' experience of sexual assault and support : a scoping review

Langdridge, Darren and Flowers, Paul and Carney, Dan (2023) Male survivors' experience of sexual assault and support : a scoping review. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 70. 101838. ISSN 1873-6335 (

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To develop future care pathways for adult male survivors of sexual assault relevant published studies must be appraised. Here we present a scoping review of the anglophone literature. Using a systematic search strategy, we addressed two main review aims: i) to describe studies about the experience of the sexual assault and ii) to describe studies about experiences of support. Studies were included if they comprised original, empirical, peer-reviewed academic research published in English between 1990 and 2023. 1453 items were screened for inclusion. 60 articles were eventually included: 45 on the experience of adult sexual assault and 15 articles on the experience of support. Included studies tended to be from the USA and UK and the majority used qualitative designs. Studies on experience of assault employ diverse definitions and are often limited to distinct contexts (intimate partner violence, military). Studies on experiences of support are distinctly limited but suggest major challenges to support seeking, particularly risks of secondary victimisation. The literature is relatively impoverished in relation to almost all aspects of men's experience of adult sexual assault. Currently there is insufficient knowledge to inform the development of appropriate care pathways. Programmatic research is urgently needed in this area.