Seven die after renal dialysis in northern Vietnam
The renal replacement therapy unit at Hoa Binh General Hospital in Hoa Binh Province, northern Vietnam.
The patients were all diagnosed with chronic kidney diseases and were receiving regular renal dialysis at Hoa Binh General Hospital in Hoa Binh Province.
Dialysis is the process of artificially removing waste and excess water from blood in people who have lost their kidney function.
According to the hospital’s leaders, the patients began their therapy at around 7:00 am on Monday in the hospital’s renal replacement therapy unit.
Two hours in, they began to show signs of anaphylaxis and were immediately cut off from the dialysis machine for emergency resuscitation.
Unfortunately, the procedure was unsuccessful and the first patient died at around 9:30 am. By late Monday night, seven patients had also drawn their last breath.
A press conference chaired by the People's Committee of Hoa Binh Province to update patients’ conditions, May 30, 2017. Photo: Tuoi Tre
According to Dr. Truong Quy Duong, director of Hoa Binh Province General Hospital, all drugs and chemicals used during the dialysis have been sealed off for investigation.
The hospital’s renal replacement therapy unit has been suspended from operation until the investigation is complete.
According to Dr. Nguyen Huu Dung, head of Bach Mai Hospital’s renal replacement therapy unit in Hanoi, ten of the 11 surviving patients have been transferred to it for further treatment.
As of Tuesday morning, their condition had stabilized.
The eleventh patient, due to the severity of his condition, remains in intensive care at Hoa Binh General Hospital, Dung said.
Hanoi’s Department of Health has also taken over the care of more than 100 patients who require regular dialysis at Hoa Binh General Hospital.
Affected patients will receive their therapy at hospitals across Hanoi until the renal replacement therapy unit at Hoa Binh General Hospital can be reopened, Dung said.
“Deaths from anaphylaxis during dialysis have been recorded in medical literature,” Dung said. "But this is the most serious case ever recorded in Vietnam.”
A special unit from the Ministry of Public Security has been mobilized to investigate the incident, according to Lieutenant General Tran Van Ve, acting chief of the ministry’s General Department of Crime Prevention.
“We can’t make a comment at the moment as we are still waiting for test results from our colleagues in the health department,” Ve said. “We will be working with the relevant authorities to reach a conclusion as soon as possible.”
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