Clinical Manifestations of HIV/AIDS in Children in Northwest Ethiopia



Abstract Background: Pediatric HIV infection is a major world health problem, which is progressing at an alarming rate. Children with AIDS compared to immune competent ones present with disease patterns that are different in nature, severity and/or frequency. Objective: To study the clinical profile of HIV/AIDS in children. Methods: A retrospective study of 89 children with symptomatic HIV infection, aimed at evaluating the clinical manifestations of HIV infection in patients admitted to Gondar University Hospital over a period of five years. Results: Eighty nine children having symptomatic HIV infection were studied. Their ages ranged from 16 months to 12 years. The median age was 2.8 years. Majority of the patients were from urban areas. The main presenting complaint were cough and/or difficult breathing 52 (58.4%) and diarrhea 47 (52.8%). Chronic diarrhea was seen in 34.8% of the patients. Commonly seen physical findings on admission were hepatomegaly (53.9%), fever (50.0%), respiratory distress (47.2%), skin lesions (46.1%), generalized lymphadenopathy (41.6%) and splenomegaly (29.2%). Neurological manifestations included developmental delay, microcephaly and seizure disorder. Most of the patients were malnourished. The main diseases that were identified were tuberculosis (70.9%), pneumonia (43.8%), oral thrush (25.8%) and chronic ear infection (24.7%). Eight (9%) of the patients died in the hospital. Conclusion: The manifestations of HIV infection in children are protean and mimic a number of other illnesses. A high index of suspicion would therefore help in making early diagnosis and a management plan. [Ethiop.J.Health Dev. 2005;19(1):24-28]



How to Cite

Asnake, S., & Amsalu, S. (2016). Clinical Manifestations of HIV/AIDS in Children in Northwest Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Journal of Health Development, 19(1). Retrieved from