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Four children hospitalised after swallowing magnetic balls

Web Report
Filed on January 28, 2020
magnetic balls

The children suffered severe damage to the digestive system with some having to undergo surgery.

Being sold as a new 'creative toy', magnetic metal balls are a new fad among children who put one silver ball in their mouth with the other one outside, mimicking face piercings.

The craze left four children swallowing the metal balls and had to be admitted to hospital in a serious condition. The children who accidentally swallowed the tiny magnetic balls suffered severe damage to the digestive system with some having to undergo surgery.

Libbie Walker, six, suffered a perforated bowel and needed major surgery to have the balls removed. She has now been left with a seven-inch scar from her belly button to her hip. In 2018 Freddie Webster, 12, was rushed to hospital after he suffered a hole in the wall of his stomach. 

According to reports in, these magnetic balls cause damage when they connect while inside the body, even between different parts of the digestive system, causing tears. 

Following the rise in cases of children swallowing these dangerous balls, a doctor in Stockport wrote to parents: "I cannot emphasise [enough] how dangerous these can be if swallowed. You may wonder why a child would swallow these or you may think "my child wouldn't swallow them" but I plead with you to not take the risk."

The doctor added that kids use their tongue to move the ball inside their mouth move which in turn moves the ball on face their. "As the balls move through the bowel they can magnetise together even when in different parts of the bowel. The pressure applied to the bowel tissue lying between the two magnets is so strong is causes a perforation in the bowel," the doctor stressed.

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