At least 18 people were killed in a massive explosion in a private hospital in the north of the Iranian capital Tehran, a spokesman for the fire brigade told the ISNA news agency on Tuesday evening.
Others were wounded in the explosion, and six people with life-threatening injuries were taken to other hospitals in the area for treatment.
The fire could be brought under control after two hours, while the fire brigade were searching for the dead and injured with the help of sniffer dogs.
The explosion at the five-storey Zina Atthar hospital occurred on Tuesday evening and its cause was still being investigated.
The fire brigade initially assumed that oxygen tanks in the basement of the hospital exploded. There was also a possibility that another gas exploded.
The hospital is said to have several medical practices, radiology departments and a large pharmacy, which remain open until late at night.