A Russian toddler was forced to undergo surgery after his mother discovered he had swallowed 42 fridge magnets.
The boy’s mother said she only left him alone for a short period of time. When she returned to check on him, the mother noticed that all of the magnets were missing from the refrigerator.
According to Orange News, the toddler was immediately rushed to a local clinic. It wasn’t until the doctors did a scan of the boy’s stomach did that they realized exactly what they were up against. The clusters of small white circles doctors saw in the image were the family’s entire fridge magnet collection.
Since the child required surgery to remove the objects, the toddler was rushed to a hospital in Chelyabinsk for the procedure.
Chief pediatric surgeon Nikolay Rostovtsev told the Daily Mail:
“Over the years, I had to take a variety of foreign bodies including magnets from young patients. Once I removed about 20 of them, but this incident of our little patient has broken all records.”
Although the child’s ordeal was most certainly unpleasant, he is expected to recover from his surgery. The toddler is currently recovering at the Chelyabinsk Oblast Children’s Hospital.
Surgeons who removed the magnets have asked parents to make sure their children do not have access to items they could easily swallow. According to Science Daily, choking is the leading cause of injury and death among children four years and younger. Nearly 17,000 children are treated every year for choking-related injuries.
In addition to magnets and other small objects, the website warns that children can also choke on food. Although there are laws in place to warn parents about toys that could harm their kids, Center for Injury Research and Policy director Gary Smith said high-risk foods are still unregulated. He warned that “children are much more likely to put food in their mouths than a toy.”
An X-ray showing the 42 fridge magnets swallowed by the toddler can be found at the Daily Mail.