Dr. Troy Madsen explains why button batteries are so dangerous, and what you should do if your child swallows one.
The National Capital Poison Center operates a 24/7 hotline for battery ingestion cases.">

Dec 25, 2017 — The little silver button batteries that we commonly find in our small electronic devices are serious health hazards if swallowed, particularly by children. On today's Health Minute, emergency room physician Dr. Troy Madsen explains why button batteries are so dangerous, and what you should do if your child swallows one.
The National Capital Poison Center operates a 24/7 hotline for battery ingestion cases.

Interview

Announcer: The Health Minute, produced by University of Utah Health.

Interviewer: The dangers of button batteries. Dr. Troy Madsen, what makes these little discs so dangerous?

Dr. Madsen: Well, button batteries are in so many electronics. You might get these things for gifts. You might have batteries around the house. The big concern with these batteries is they can burn right through the esophagus. So if you have a child who swallows one of these batteries, they can burn right through, cause irreversible damage sometimes. They look like coins, so you might think, "Oh, my child swallowed a coin. It's just going to pass right through."

They're nothing like a coin. You need to get help for these. Be aware of the danger of these button batteries. If you suspect your child has swallowed something, there's actually a National Button Battery Hotline. Search for it online. Call them. They'll give you advice on what to do, but typically, you're going to go to the ER so we can get that battery out, try and prevent the damage that it could cause.

Announcer: To find out more about this and other health and wellness topics, visit thescoperadio.com.


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