MAY 5, 1989/MONTROSE VOICE 9
AIDS risk low but not zero from blood transfusions
By ROB STEIN
UPI Science Writer
FOR THE MONTROSE VOICE
BOSTON-The risk of being infected with
the AIDS virus from a blood transfusion has
been reduced dramatically but is still "not ze-
ro," researchers reported Wednesday.
Based on a study involving more than 4000
heart surgery patients in Houston and Baltimore between April 1985 and Dec. 1988, the
researchers estimated about three out of every 100,000 people who receive one unit of donated blood can be expected to be infected
with the AIDS virus.
"The risk is low but it is not zero," said Dr.
Kenrad Nelson, head of the study and an
epidemiology professor at the Johns Hopkins
School of Medicine in Baltimore.
Dr. Noah Cohen, an epidemiologist at Tex
as A&M's College of Veterinary Medicine,
participated in the study while he was on the
staff at Johns Hopkins.
The study, published in The New England
Journal of Medicine, underscores the need for
those at risk for being infected with the AIDS
virus—primarily homosexual and bisexual
men and intravenous drug users—to avoid
donating blood, he said.
"This reinforces the importance of not only
antibody screening but also donor deferral,"
The results also support recommendations
that people should try to stockpile their own
blood ahead of time when they know they will
need a transfusion to end their risk of being
infected with the virus.
"It's a good idea when it can be done" Nelson said in an interview from his Baltimore
Dr. Gerald Sandler, of the American Red
Cross, said the findings reassure the public
that the blood supply is relatively safe.
"Those of us who are responsible for the
blood supply have been making energetic efforts to do whatever possible to attract the
healthiest (donors) and introduce the most
sensitive tests we can to reduce those risks
even further;' Sandler said.
Nelson and his colleagues tested 4163 patients who underwent heart surgery between
April 1985-Dec. 1988 before and after they received blood transfusions from donated
Only one patient was found to be infected
with the human immunodeficiency virus or
HIV, which causes acquired immune deficiency syndrome. But based on that infection, the
researchers estimated the risk of being infected with the virus was .0003 percent.
Although blood centers test donors for the
virus, a small percentage of infected donors
slip through because they have not yet developed the antibodies to the virus that the
screening tests detect.
The researchers also tested 2749 heart surgery patients for HTLV-1, a virus in the same
family as the AIDS virus that causes a rare
form of blood cancer known as adult T-cell
The researchers found that at the time the
study was conducted, the risk for being infected with HTLV-1 was 10 times higher than
that for the AIDS virus. But the American
Red Cross has begun screening for HTLV-1
since the study was done.
"For HTLV-1 we think the risk will drop
considerably because now the blood banks
are routinely screening for that virus," Nelson
Total lau?n maintenance
• Trash Remoual
• Chimneij Sweep
• Tree Seruice
• Stumps Remoued
• Complete Sprinkler Systems
Man found guilty in shooting of girl friend
Page ME!, inc
smait size, compact desiqn
New NEC 5000
—Digital-Vibrator Pager —Holii-
12 number, in memory
—One button control —Wide area
Buy Yours Today,
No credit needed
4252 Richmond no.Wi
Page ME!, inc (TM)
Tour Communications Store
MC. Visa. Discover, checks
SAN ANTONIO (UPI)-A state district court jury late Wednesday sentenced a 26-year-old San Antonio
man to 20 years in prison for the
slaying of his AIDS-infected girl
The jury deliberated over 4 hours
Tuesday before finding David
Boyde Melton guilty in the Jan.
1988 slaying of Donna C. Smith, 31,
of San Antonio. The jury resumed
deliberations Wednesday before returning with the sentence.
Melton had testified he killed
Smith in self-defense, saying she
had threatened to kill him and that
he believed she was reaching inside
her purse for a gun when he shot her
with a gun he bought with money he
got by selling an engagement ring
he bought her. No gun was found inside the purse.
Shortly before the shooting, Melton testified he learned that his girl
friend's disease had been passed on
to their infant daughter, Sarah, who
died two days after Smith from an
AIDS-related illness. Melton tested
negative for the presence of the virus for acquired immune deficiency
Defense attorney Raymond
Angelini said during closing arguments Tuesday Melton acted out of
fear for his life, telling the jury Melton had a sister who killed herself
and her husband.
Angelini added that Smith had
scratched Melton during a scuffle
the day of the shooting and that
Melton feared he might contract
But Assistant Bexar County District Attorney Wende Rush told the
jury a scratch was not provocation
enough to kill somebody.
"He wants you to believe that because she was a prostitute and she
had AIDS, he had a right to kill heif
Film: Yet another 'Robinson Crusoe'
By STEVE WARREN
FOR THE MONTROSE VOICE
Would you like to spend HO minutes on
an island with Aidan Quinn?
Aside from the appropriateness of
having it distributed by "Island" Pictures, there was no earthly reason to
make another film of "Robinson
Crusoe." There must have been a silent
version in the 1920s that said all that ever will be said about this story. Caleb
Deschanel's version, simply called
"Crusoe," is set in 1808. Crusoe (Aidan
Quinn) is a slave trader sailing from
Virginia to Guinea in search of fresh
He's not a nice man. He kicks the
ship's dog, Scamp, and even a white
member of the crew urinates in hit.
shaving water; but when storm and fire
wreck the ship he makes an
uncharacteristic attempt to save the
lives of others.
Once Crusoe reaches an island where
he and Scamp may be the only living
creatures, he becomes even more sympathetic, with his haunted, Montgomer-
y Clift eyes and his James Dean, Actors'
Studio technique. The island is made of
rocks that may be real but photograph
Crusoe furnishes a cave with what
he's able to salvage from the ship,
builds a boat that never makes it off the
launching pad, and prays for his dog,
who dies anyway. Half-crazed with
loneliness, Crusoe rescues a black man
from a ritual in which natives of another tribe slit the throats of his people.
Though he sees the man (Hepburn Graham) as a slave, he also represents potential companionship for Crusoe, who
becomes the first person to say "Thank
God, it's Friday!"
Just kidding. Actually Crusoe calls
the man "Lucky," but he disappears during the night. The white man has a few
encounters, mostly adversarial, with a
man (Ade Sapara) of the warrior tribe;
but when the black learns to parrot an
English folk song, it turns Crusoe into
Come Join Us for
Sunday Continental Breakfast
3100 FANNIN (713)522-2379
nesday— 1 /I price rt
rstfay— 111 price toe
(FOR 4 MONTH MEMBERSHIPS ONLY)
WATCH FOR UPCOMING CHANCES
A SjWE PLACl TOMEIT
14029 Eastex Fwy
OPEN 24 HRS
25tt Token Arcade
Private Viewing Rooms
$6-1 Video $10-2 Videos
Video Rentals & Sales
Full Line of Novelties
Magazines & Paperbacks
Singles & Couples
Beltway 8 A
LIUFE MTTEH3 ©EATM
and Full Detailing