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2ND LD: Baby dies after receiving wrong medicine at hospital.

YOKOHAMA, April 11 Kyodo


An 18-month-old girl died Monday at Tokai University Hospital in Isehara, Kanagawa Prefecture, after a nurse mixed up a tube for intravenous drip and a stomach tube and administered medicine into the wrong duct, hospital officials said.

Hospital head Ryuzaburo Tanino told a press conference lately Monday night that the nurse put cough and diarrhea medicine into the tube for intravenous drip instead of pumping it into the stomach tube.

The tube for intravenous drip was attached to the baby's right hand, while the stomach tube was attached to her left hand.

The medicine was administered at 8:45 a.m. Sunday and the baby died of heart failure and other complications about nine hours later, Tanino said.

Kanagawa prefectural police said the police plans to file a criminal case against the nurse, who was identified only as a woman in her mid-20s.

Tokai University Hospital doctors said the nurse dissolved six types of cough and diarrhea medicine into 5 cc of water and released the concoction into the tube for intravenous drip.

The condition of the baby, who was being treated for stomach and bronchial ailments, deteriorated quickly, and the medical staff summoned to the scene carried out blood transfusion and took other measures in a bid to reverse the situation, doctors said.

The girl's condition stabilized for a while, but deteriorated sharply in the afternoon. She died at 7:30 p.m.

''It was clearly a case of malpractice on the part of our hospital. We are going to do everything we can to compensate her family and will do everything possible such incident would not occur again,'' Tanino said.

Medical experts say stomach tubes for use in adult patients are normally larger than tubes designed for intravenous drip. There is, however, no difference in size for the two types of ducts sold in Japan for use in infants.

Some hospitals use different colors to distinguish the two types of tubes.
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Publication:Japan Weekly Monitor
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Apr 17, 2000
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