|Has this boy bitten off more than he can chew?|
The number of food-related injuries in the US caused by children choking on food is on the rise, prompting better guidelines on the prevention of choking, reveals a study published in the journal Pediatrics.
Researchers analyzed data on non-fatal food-related choking among US children aged 14 years or under between 2001 and 2009. The researchers are from the Center for Injury Research and Policy (CIRP) of The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital and worked alongside colleagues at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The study used data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance system over the 9-year period, and found that 111,914 children aged 0-14 years visited US hospital emergency departments as a result of non-fatal food choking.
- There was an equivalent every year of 12,435 children turning up to ER with non-fatal food chocking, with an average age of 4.5 years.
- The study showed that children under 1 year of age accounted for 37.8% of the cases.
- There was an almost equal split between the numbers of boys and girls presenting with choking emergencies.
- More than 60% of the choking cases occurred in children 4 year of age and under.
The results showed that the majority of children (87.3%) were treated and released from hospital, while 10% were hospitalized. The remaining 2.6% left hospital with medical advice.