Injury in Children | Swallow Magnets

 
Swallow Magnets Injury

The U. S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has released a warning regarding magnets and children.  Much care should be taken when considering giving children toys that have mini-magnets.  If these magnets become dislodged or if children swallow them during play, then injury and death can occur.  If two (2) or more of these magnets are swallowed, they may not pass in the stools.  They can attach to each other in the gastrointestinal tract.  As a result, various injuries can occur, including perforation, twisting, and blockage of the intestines.  In addition, the magnets can cause infection, blood poisoning, and death.
 
The CPSC has stated that it is aware of at least 53 children who have suffered after having ingested magnets: 33 were injured, 19 required surgery, and one died.
 
So what precautions can you take with your child?  Injury prevention is the key.  Carefully decide which toys your child can play with & what toys you even allow into your home.  Regularly check any toys that have magnets for missing pieces.  These magnets can either be a part of toys or they can be the toy itself.  A building set of mini-magnets is a perfect example of a toy that although advertised for children, should not be used without strict constant direct one-on-one supervision.
 
Lastly, if you think you child has swallowed magnets, contact your doctor immediately.  Signs and symptoms of a problem can include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and/or abdominal pain.
 
To listen to an audio regarding injury in children who swallowed magnets by accident, please go to http://bit.ly/sLFGxR.
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About Nancy M. Silva, MD, FAAP

I'm a Board Certified Pediatrician. I've been in practice since 2000. I'm happily married with two children. I graduated Medical School from the State University of New York (SUNY) Downstate College of Medicine in Brooklyn, NY. My Pediatric Residency training was at University of South Florida, College of Medicine. I've been in private practice since 2000. As a medical student, I had the privilege to care for children at Kings County Hospital & Downstate Medical Center in urban Brooklyn. As a resident, I cared for children at Tampa General Hospital & All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg, Florida. These experiences helped shape the Pediatrician I am today.

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