Doctoral candidate, Department of Psychology, New York University, New York, NY.
Risk of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission by blood transfusions before the implementation of HIV-1 antibody screening
Article first published online: 5 MAR 2003
Volume 31, Issue 1, pages 4–11, January 1991
How to Cite
Busch, M.P., Young, M.J., Samson, S.M., Mosley, J.W., Ward, J.W., Perkins, H.A. and The Transfusion Safety Study Group (1991), Risk of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission by blood transfusions before the implementation of HIV-1 antibody screening. Transfusion, 31: 4–11. doi: 10.1046/j.1537-2995.1991.31191096183.x
- Issue published online: 5 MAR 2003
- Article first published online: 5 MAR 2003
- Received for publication March 6, 1990; revision received May 14, 1990, and accepted May 29, 1990
Little information is available regarding the risk of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection for patients transfused before routine anti-HIV-1 screening of blood donors was instituted in March 1985. A model was developed for estimating both the proportion and the number of transfusion recipients in the San Francisco Bay area who were infected by HIV-1 during each of the 7 years preceding routine donor screening for anti-HIV-1. The model is based on analysis of 1) donation histories of HIV-1-infected donors identified at the regional blood center; 2) HIV-1 seroprevalence estimates for homosexual and bisexual men in San Francisco; and 3) HIV-1 infection and survival rates for recipients traced by the Transfusion Safety Study and Irwin Memorial Blood Centers’ Look Back Program. The incidence of transfusion- associated HIV-1 infection is estimated to have risen rapidly from the first occurrence in 1978 to a peak in late 1982 of approximately 1.1 percent per transfused unit. The decrease after 1982 coincided with the implementation of high-risk donor deferral measures. It is estimated that, overall, approximately 2135 transfusion recipients were infected with HIV-1 in the San Francisco region alone. This number suggests a higher prevalence of transfusion-associated HIV-1 infection than has been generally recognized and indicates the need for continued tracing of potentially exposed recipients. The data also strongly support the effectiveness of early donor education and self-exclusion measures and emphasize the importance of continued research and development in this area.