Child deaths from acute kidney injury rises to 133 in Indonesia

Indonesia’s health minister said on Friday that the number of children who had died from acute kidney injury (AKI) rose to 133 from the previously reported 99.

The deaths were among a total of 241 cases in 22 provinces, Budi Gunadi Sadikin said, adding that most patients were children under the age of five.

Budi on Thursday said some medicinal syrups available in Indonesia contained ethylene glycol and diethylene glycol, ingredients that have been linked to fatal AKI in children.

Indonesia has temporarily banned sales and prescription of all syrup-based medications and formed an expert team comprised of local health and paediatrics officials and World Health Organization (WHO) representatives to look into the AKI spike among children.

The country’s food and drug agency has also named five locally-made products which contained excessive levels of ethylene glycol and has ordered the producers to pull them out of circulation and destroy all remaining batches.