HIV infection and AIDS in Jerusalem: A microcosm of illness in Israel

A. E. Moses, S. Maayan*, G. Rahav, M. Weinberger, D. Engelhard, M. Schlesinger, B. Knishkowy, A. Morag, M. Shapiro

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


During the decade 1985-94, 158 individuals (124 males, 34 females) with HIV/ AIDS were seen at the AIDS clinic of Hadassah University Hospital. They comprised 10% of the total reported number of HIV-infected Israelis and included 6% of all reported HIV-infected Ethiopians and all HIV-infected West Bank Palestinians. Most individuals (82%) were self-referred; 12% were detected through the local HIV screening clinic. Risk groups for AIDS were homo/bisexuality (39%), heterosexual relations (30%), intravenous drug abuse (15%), contaminated blood transfusions (9%), born to HIV+ mothers (1%), and hemophilia (< 1%). In 5% (all males) no risk factor was given. Of the 158 individuals 29 were Ethiopian immigrants, 25 West Bank Palestinians, and the rest were local Israelis and tourists. Of the 34 females seen, 21 acquired HIV heterosexually, 6 were intravenous drug abusers, 5 were recipients of contaminated transfusions, and 2 were infants. An initial clinical presentation with full-blown AIDS was observed in 30% of the individuals. The range of clinical presentations was similar to that seen in western countries, with Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia, cytomegalovirus retinitis, mycobacterial infections and Kaposi's sarcoma seen most frequently. One case of disseminated cutaneous leishmaniasis was observed. The mortality rate during the follow-up was 55%. In 35% of individuals the immediate cause of death was severe bacterial infections. The Palestinian subpopulation presented at an advanced stage of the disease with a high incidence of transfusion recipients, while most HIV-infected Ethiopians presented with asymptomatic disease transmitted heterosexually. HIV/AIDS as seen at Hadassah University Hospital during 1985-94 exhibited the mixed form of Euro-American AIDS with additional facets of recently introduced African infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)716-721
Number of pages6
JournalIsrael Journal of Medical Sciences
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • AIDS in Jerusalem
  • Ethiopians
  • Opportunistic infections
  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • West Bank Palestinians


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