Youthful AIDS Victim Whose Case Prompted Warning to Hemophiliacs Dies
CRESSON, Pa. (AP) _ A 11/2 -year-old AIDS victim who apparently contracted the disease before birth from his hemophiliac father via his mother died Friday at home, his father said.
Dwight Burk’s was the first reported case of AIDS in the child of a hemophiliac, according to medical journals.
Dwight’s case prompted the National Hemophilia Foundation in April to advise hemophiliacs to postpone having children for a few years until scientists can perfect a technique to kill the AIDS virus in blood clotting concentrates.
Dwight died around 9 a.m. shortly after awakening, according to his father, Patrick Burk.
Burk, 27, was stricken with acquired immune deficiency syndrome apparently from his regular doses of blood clotting concentrates. More than a year before learning he had the disease, he passed the AIDS virus on to his wife, Lauren, 25, who became pregnant with Dwight.
The baby most likely contracted the disease before birth, according to doctors.
Burk said in a telephone interview from the family’s home that an autopsy was to be performed at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh and that the body would be used for medical study. The exact cause of death was not immediately known, he said.
Mrs. Burk suffers from AIDS-related complex, which afflicts some people who have contracted the AIDS virus.
Twenty percent of patients with ARC will develop AIDS within two years. Researchers do not yet know if the rest of them will go on to get AIDS after a longer period, or whether any will stabilize or get better.