• Kyodo


A woman in her 60s died last month after injecting home-use medicine dispensed at Kyoto University Hospital that was 738 times stronger than a normal dosage, the university said on Tuesday.

According to the hospital in Kyoto’s Sakyo Ward, the woman complained of a sore back on the night of Sept. 26 after taking the medicine intravenously at home. She was treated at the university hospital the next morning but died.

The medicine, an injectable solution of selenium, was prepared on Aug. 28 by two pharmacists at the hospital’s pharmacy. The hospital discovered the massively high concentration after examining the remnants of the solution and blood taken from the deceased.

The selenium agent was prepared in-house at the hospital as no pharmaceutical companies offer a ready-made product.

Selenium is an essential mineral for the human body as it plays an important role in maintaining a healthy metabolism. A lack of it may cause such problems as cardiac diseases, immune disorders and cancers.

The hospital said an abnormality was reported with another shot of the same medicine prepared on the same day for a teenage boy, suggesting the two cases were linked.

Hospital officials, who publicly apologized for the incident, said they had reported it to the police and the health ministry for further investigation.

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