NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Some popular toys for kids are attracting serious criticism after trips to the emergency room have skyrocketed nationwide.
Now, there’s a major push at the nation’s capital to get them off the market. This comes two years after a federal court threw out a ban on the sale of power magnet toys. And News4 Investigates found out these magnetic toys are easy for anyone to get their hands on.
Doctors say magnetic beads like these are doing more harm than good.
Doctor Harold Lovvorn. an associate professor of pediatric surgery at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital, says magnetic toys are doing more harm than good.
“They can pass through the intestinal track differently and then when their magnetic force comes into the right field.... boom!” said Dr. Lovvorn.
Even though doctors say they should be kept away from children, News4 investigates found magnetic beads being sold all over the internet for anyone to buy.
We even found one being advertised for adults or children.
"If you're going to buy them make sure you're ready to supervise,” said Nikki Cooke.
Unfortunately, Josh and Nikki Cooke found out the hard way after their 2-year-old son Caiden swallowed 23 beads
He's one of 1,600 kids who were reported to have swallowed the magnets in the 2 years since the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission lifted its ban.
While the ban was in place, doctors say they saw a dramatic decline in injuries. Now, Vanderbilt Children’s tells News4 they see at least 1 case a month.
"They attach to each other and they can be on different sides of the intestines, trap the bowel, create holes in the bowel and cause bowel obstruction,” said Dr. Lovvorn.
It’s serious injuries like these that had a lawmaker introduce a bill to ban them.
Right now, it's in front of a committee on which senator Marsha Blackburn sits. A representative for Blackburn says she's looking into it.
The best thing you can do is if you do magnetic beads in your house. just make sure to keep a close eye on your kids while they're playing with them.
And when you put them away keep them somewhere only you can get to.