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Prof Gene Feder is interviewed on BBC Radio Bristol

Prof Gene Feder

20 June 2015

Professor Gene Feder was interviewed on BBC Radio Bristol today about his research into domestic violence.

Prof Feder, is a GP and a researcher at the Centre for Academic Primary Care at the University of Bristol. He spoke to Laura Rawlings about his work on men and domestic violence.

(Click here for a link to BBC iPlayer - intervew starts 20m 45s after the start of the programme and is available until Saturday 18th July)

Feder and his colleagues have found that men visiting their GP with symptoms of anxiety or depression are more likely to have experienced or carried out some form of behaviour linked to domestic violence and abuse.

The researchers are urging GPs to ask male patients with anxiety or depression about domestic violence

The study, led by Professor Marianne Hester OBE and published in BMJ Open, aimed to find out whether there is an association between men who have experienced or carried out domestic violence and abuse with men visiting their GP with mental health problems or who are binge drinking and using cannabis.

In the largest study of its kind in the world, researchers distributed a questionnaire across 16 GP practices in the South West that was completed by 1,368 men aged 18 years and above. The survey asked the men whether they had experienced or perpetrated any of four negative behaviours linked to domestic violence and abuse, such as feeling frightened, physically hurt, forced sex, or having to ask permission from a partner.

The survey then asked about experiences of these negative behaviours, followed by questions about their relationship with the perpetrator, frequency and escalation of the experience. Subsequent questions were then asked about the perpetration of any of the four negative behaviours towards a current or former partner in the past 12 months.

The study found 309 men, [22.7 per cent or nearly a quarter] of the 1,368 participants experienced at least one of the four negative behaviours associated with domestic violence and abuse, and 212 [16.9 per cent or one-sixth] of 1,294 respondents reported perpetration of these behaviours at least once.

Researchers also found that men who used some form of negative behaviour towards their partners were three to five times more likely to report symptoms of anxiety than non-perpetrators. 

The interview with Prof Feder is available BBC iPlayer until Saturday 18th July.

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