Wednesday, January 9, 2013

What does a button battery do when ingested?!

One of our follower's asked a great question! I was planning to respond back to her comment but thought maybe more of you might have the same concerning question:
Q: Are all button battery ingestion cases as severe as Emmett's? What makes them worse or less severe?
A: A button battery will start burning the tissue in the esophagus within 2 HOURS! Many cases (like Emmett') there is not a choking episode, so the parent's have no idea that the child ever swallowed the battery. The symptoms mask those of a common cold and flu virus, leaving the child misdiagnosed. The longer the battery stay's in the more it burns.
The acid in the esophagus activates the battery, causing a chemical reaction. The battery chemically burns the tissue.
In some cases, if the button battery is small enough and the child is older, the button battery may pass into the stomach and then into the digestive track.
This is my big hang up right now... If the battery passes into the stomach, most physician's will say that the child will pass it by having a bowel movement. In many situations that is the case, HOWEVER I have read of battery ingestion's that HAVE burnt the stomach and intestines. I personally advise parent's to speak up and advocate for their child. The medical world is still learning about the button battery ingestion issue. This is why Emmett's Fight is speaking out about button battery awareness!
There have been 11 death's recorded caused by ingesting a button battery. My heart aches for these families. In our bodies the esophagus run's along side the Aorta (heart). If the battery is lodged low enough, the battery can burn through to the Aorta.

This is Emmett's Chest X-Ray