A recent seroprevalence study of newborns indicates that one in 62 children born in New York City has antibodies to the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)1. The distribution of incubation periods for paediatric patients is needed to estimate future AIDS case loads from these seroprevalence data. Current estimates of incubation periods for paediatric patients are based on limited data2-5. We use parametric5,6 and non-parametric7,8 methods to analyse incubation periods for 215 paediatric patients with AIDS whose only known route of infection is maternal. We conclude that incubation periods are longer than previously reported9; that there is a distinct knee in the incubation period distribution at seven months which suggests two risk populations; and that there is an increase in incidence which is consistent with exponential growth.
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