ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday, April 01, 2007
Vol. 41 - No 44

Beware of killer toys

By L.B.Senaratne

In different shapes and colours these phones are freely available on the pavements

Toys can kill. This is what doctors are warning after operating on children to remove nickel cadmium batteries from toy cell phones, that have got stuck in their aesophagouses or windpipes.

A phone from amma

Peradeniya Teaching Hospital Senior surgeon, Channa Ratnatunga, who operated on two children last month, said the danger is that the batteries dissolve with time leading to cadmium poisoning and eventual death.

Another surgeon of the same hospital, Dr.Arinda Dhanapala, said these toys should not be allowed to be imported to the country or as a safety meassure the area where the nickel cadmium is fixed should be sealed.

An ENT Physician at the Kandy General Hospital said he had come across cases where the nickel cadmium batteries had got stuck in the windpipe and had to be removed through surgery.

An X'ray showing two batteries lodged in the body of a five-year-old before surgery

This happens when children stick the batteries in their nostrils and they go down to the windpipe. He said this could be more dangerous than when the children swallow the batteries that eventually get lodged in the aesophageous.

Parents unaware of the danger buy these toy cellphones for their children who are fascinated by the music that comes on along with flashing lights—all courtesy of these deadly batteries.

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Copyright 2007 Wijeya Newspapers Ltd.Colombo. Sri Lanka.