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Dangers of Button-Cell Batteries

Yesterday, ConsumerReports.org reported on the recent data released by Dr. Toby Litovitz, M.D. regarding the dangers of button-cell batteries.

Sincer 1985, Dr. Litovitz has been collecting and analyzing incident-report data through the National Battery Ingestion Hotline. In that over twenty-five year time span, incident reports from battery ingestion have increased sevenfold. Even worse, over the past five years, Dr. Litovitz has aseen what she calls a "very dramatic shift" in the severity of injury from battery ingestion. According to the data, the most dangerous battery is the 20 mm lithium battery. Smaller batteries tend to make there way through and out of the digestive tract. This particular battery most often gets lodged in the throat or esophagus. The battery can then burn holes in the esophagus or trachea requiring surgical repairs. If not caught in time, the injuries are sometimes fatal.

Because the symptoms of battery ingestion are often mistaken for normal childhood ailments, its often misdiagnosed as stomach flu or a common cold. If your child is exhibiting symptoms such as vomiting, lack of appetite, drooling, hoarseness, cough, feverl or respiratory symptoms and they MAY have swallowed a battery, get them to the nearest emergency room for an x-ray immediately.
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