Coin-Size Batteries Pose Serious Danger to Children

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Data shows that there has been a large increase in the number of children who have been hurt, or even lost their lives as the result of swallowing coin-size lithium batteries.  According to the Minnesota Department of Health, the number of cases has more than quadrupled from 2006–2010 compared to the previous four-year period. In 2010, more than 3,500 cases were reported to U.S. poison control centers.

“Coin-sized lithium batteries are increasingly common and can be found in watches, toys, remote controls, bathroom scales and singing greeting cards, among a long, long list of others,” said Gloria Sorem, public health nurse with Sherburne County Health and Human Services.

The batteries are only 20mm in diameter, which is about the size of a nickel.  When stuck in a child’s throat, the saliva triggers an electrical current and a chemical reaction that can severely burn the esophagus in as little as two hours.  The burning can even continue after the battery has been removed from the child’s throat.

Most of the batteries that have been swallowed were from remote controls.

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Source: Star News

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