Risk of hepatitis A virus infection among sewage workers in Israel

Arch Environ Health. 2000 Jan-Feb;55(1):7-10. doi: 10.1080/00039890009603378.


Sewage workers are exposed to a wide range of chemicals and biological agents, including the hepatitis A virus. Inasmuch as Israel is an endemic area for hepatitis A, it is unclear if sewage workers are at increased risk for hepatitis A or which factors contribute to such risk. The authors compared seropositivity of hepatitis A in 100 sewage workers with that in 100 blue-collar worker controls. Hepatitis A seropositivity was highly prevalent, but nonsignificant, in both sewage workers and controls (82% and 91%, respectively). In sewage workers, the major risk for serological positivity was age (odds ratio = 4.5, 95% confidence interval = 1.6, 12.4 for every 10 y). The factors associated negatively with seropositivity were years of education and years of seniority. The authors concluded that exposure to sewage is not a risk factor for hepatitis A infection in Israel, and, therefore, sewage workers do not require special attention in this regard.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Educational Status
  • Hepatitis A / epidemiology*
  • Hepatitis A / etiology
  • Hepatitis A Antibodies
  • Hepatitis Antibodies / blood*
  • Humans
  • Israel / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Exposure*
  • Protective Clothing / statistics & numerical data
  • Risk Factors
  • Seroepidemiologic Studies
  • Sewage*


  • Hepatitis A Antibodies
  • Hepatitis Antibodies
  • Sewage