Effects of High-Dose Selenium on Mortality of Sepsis and Septic Shock Patients with Severe Selenium Deficiency in Taiwan

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Chun-Man Chen Yen-Ling Chen Shu-Min Lin Huang-Pin Wu Jiun-Nong Lin Kai-Huang Lin Chin-Ming Chen Kuang-Yao Yang Shih-Chi Ku Fu-Tsai Chung Chih-His Kuo Chien Tung Chiu Chi-Kuei Hsu Hsin-Hui Hsu Chien-Ming Chu Han-Chung Hu Chung-Shu Lee Shin-Hwar Wu I-Chieh Mao Ting-Yu Chao Yi-Wen Chu Du-Shieng Chien


The relationship between serum selenium levels and mortality was investigated in septic patients with severe selenium deficiency (baseline selenium ≤ 80 ng/mL). Eligible patients of sepsis or septic shock were randomized to receive Placebo or High-Dose Selenium (1,000 μg/day) via intravenous injection. Safety, serum selenium, mortality, SOFA, and Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) scores were monitored. Among all 330 subjects, 27.9% subjects (n=92) had severe selenium deficiency (mean serum selenium = 66.5 ng/mL). Mortality of severe selenium deficiency patients was 27.2%, significantly higher than 17.9% of all subjects. In severe selenium deficiency Placebo group (n=45), 62% subjects showed gradual increase of selenium levels to ~110 ng/mL (mortality ~21.4%), while 38% subjects remained at low selenium ≤ 110 ng/mL throughout study (mortality ~41.2%). Mortality for Placebo subjects with normal baseline selenium ≥ 110 ng/mL was 13.6%. With High-Dose Selenium treatment, 91% of severe selenium deficiency subjects showed quick selenium increase to ~110 ng/mL (mortality 25.5%). Mortality was reduced to 8.6% for High-Dose Selenium subjects with baseline selenium ≥ 110 ng/mL. The odds ratio showed significantly greater survival of High-Dose Selenium subjects with baseline selenium ≥ 110 ng/mL (91.4%) than severe selenium deficiency Placebo subjects (74.1%). Mean baseline SOFA scores for severe selenium deficiency patients were 9.1–9.4, decrease of SOFA scores in High-Dose Selenium subjects was significantly greater than Placebo subjects, along with significant improvement of GCS scores. Repeated infusion of High-Dose Selenium in severe selenium deficiency patients for 14 days was safe and well-tolerated. Mortality for patients with sepsis was clearly affected by serum selenium concentrations. High mortality (41–50%) was observed in the sepsis patients constantly with low selenium £ 80 ng/mL; mortality was reduced to 21–23% if their serum selenium could be increased to ≥ 110 ng/mL. High-Dose Selenium resulted in rapid restoration of serum selenium and improved the survival of severe selenium deficiency septic patients. Low mortality (9–14%) was observed in the sepsis patients starting with baseline selenium ≥ 110 ng/mL. Overall this study demonstrates the significant impact of insufficient selenium levels on the mortality of septic patients. Treatment with high-dose selenium reduced the mortality of severe selenium deficiency septic subjects.

Keywords: Selenium deficiency, sepsis and septic shock, mortality, SOFA score, Asian

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CHEN, Chun-Man et al. Effects of High-Dose Selenium on Mortality of Sepsis and Septic Shock Patients with Severe Selenium Deficiency in Taiwan. Medical Research Archives, [S.l.], v. 12, n. 2, feb. 2024. ISSN 2375-1924. Available at: <https://esmed.org/MRA/mra/article/view/5044>. Date accessed: 25 july 2024. doi: https://doi.org/10.18103/mra.v12i2.5044.
Research Articles


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