02:25 AM

More than one in four US kids exposed to weapon violence

More than 17.5 million children in the U.S. are witnesses to, or victims of, assaults with weapons - far exceeding the number of kids who have diabetes or cancer.

About one in 33 kids are directly assaulted during incidents involving guns or knives, researchers report in the journal Pediatrics.

"This study represents typical American kids at a range of incomes and shows that their exposure to violence is very widespread and common," said Dr. Denise Dowd, a specialist in pediatric emergency medicine at Children's Mercy Hospitals and Clinics in Kansas City, Missouri.