PSYCHOSEXUAL EVALUATION

PSYCHOSEXUAL EVALUATION

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A PSYCHOSEXUAL EVALUATION?

A psychosexual evaluation is used to review an individual’s sexual history and provide information regarding their sexual identity, sexual interests, and evaluate the presence of any paraphilic behaviors. In addition, a psychosexual evaluation provides recommendations for the treatment of sexually inappropriate behaviors and a risk assessment for recidivism. Often psychosexuals are requested as part of sex-specific treatment to determine treatment progress, make recommendations regarding safety, and may include a polygraph examination.

WHEN IS A PSYCHOSEXUAL EVALUATION APPROPRIATE?

A psychosexual evaluation is appropriate when there is evidence of a history of an individual engaging in either contact or non-contact sexual offending behavior including:

  • Sexual arousal from exposing oneself to unsuspecting victims or observing others engaging in an intimate activity without their knowledge.
  • Engaging in sexual activity without consent or with individuals legally unable to provide consent.
  • Engaging in sexual activity with family members, animals, or non-sexual inanimate objects.

Additionally, a psychosexual evaluation may be beneficial for individuals who have not been alleged or accused of sexual offending, but who experience significant distress or functional impairment as a result of:

  • Recurrent, intense sexual arousal from a very specific focus on a nongenital body part.
  • Significant history of non-traditional sexual activity (e.g., group sex, prostitution)
  • Compulsive sexual behavior

WHEN IS A PSYCHOSEXUAL EVALUATION NOT APPROPRIATE?

Psychosexual evaluations provide rich clinical information regarding an individual’s sexual interests, attitudes, and behaviors. However, given the sensitive nature of these evaluations and the topic of human sexuality, a psychosexual evaluation does not do the following:

  • Determine guilt or innocence. A psychosexual evaluation cannot determine whether an individual has committed or will commit a sexual offense.
  • Determine sexual victimization. While a psychosexual reviews an individual’s biopsychosocial history, it cannot determine whether an individual was sexually victimized.
  • Determine first offense. A psychosexual evaluation cannot predict if an individual will become an offender.
  • Determine sexual identity. It is inappropriate to use a psychosexual evaluation to determine an individual’s sexual preference or sexual identity.

WHAT TO EXPECT DURING A PSYCHOSEXUAL EVALUATION:

Please expect a psychosexual evaluation to last between 5-8 hours depending on the participant’s history and if a polygraph examination is required. We recommend completing this assessment in two sessions within close proximity to one another, although it can be completed in a single session with sufficient breaks. The assessment must be completed in-person. Telehealth or virtual assessments are not available for psychosexual evaluations. There are many different tests used throughout this evaluation so it is important to bring your glasses and/or any hearing aids as required.

A typical psychosexual evaluation report takes between 10-12 weeks to complete, but this may vary depending on a number of factors including complexity, cooperation, and breadth of records. Once the report is completed, it will be provided to the referring source and may or may not be shared with the examinee directly. However, you will be given the opportunity to schedule a 30-minute feedback session to discuss pertinent findings and answer any questions.

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