Button batteries found in many household electronic devices and toys pose a severe but little known risk for young children. Button batteries can cause serious injury or death if ingested.
If a child swallows a button battery, the battery can get stuck in their throat and burn through the oesophagus in as little as two hours. Repair and recovery can require treatment with feeding and breathing tubes and multiple surgeries.
Children under five years old are at the greatest risk.
Action should be taken around the home to examine toys and devices and ensure the battery compartment is secure to prevent small children getting access to the button battery.
Queensland Health has developed a resource to increase the awareness and prevention of button battery injuries:
Further information on the dangers of button battery