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Risk of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection from Blood Donors Who Later Developed the Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome

JOHN W. WARD, M.D.; DEBORAH A. DEPPE, B.S.; SUSAN SAMSON, M.P.H.; HERBERT PERKINS, M.D.; PAUL HOLLAND, M.D.; LEONOR FERNANDO, M.D.; PAUL M. FEORINO, Ph.D; PAUL THOMPSON, M.D.; STEVEN KLEINMAN, M.D.; and JAMES R. ALLEN, M.D.
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▸Requests for reprints should be addressed to John W. Ward, M.D.; Epidemiology Branch, AIDS Program, Centers for Disease Control; Atlanta, GA 30333.


Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta, Georgia; Irwin Memorial Blood Bank, San Francisco; Sacramento Medical Foundation Blood Center, Sacramento; and the American Red Cross Blood Services, Los Angeles, California.


Ann Intern Med. 1987;106(1):61-62. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-106-1-61
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This excerpt has been provided in the absence of an abstract.

Blood transfusions can transmit the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV; formerly HTLV-III/LAV), the etiologic agent of the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Because serologic tests to identify HIV-infected persons were not commercially available until 1985, previous studies of HIV transmission via blood transfusion first identified transfusion-associated cases of AIDS and then, retrospectively, the respective blood donors (1-3). The blood donors implicated in HIV transmission have usually been asymptomatic at the time of donation but become viremic years after their donation (4). Thus, previous studies of transfusion-associated HIV infection could not assess the likelihood of HIV transmission from infected donors to recipients.

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