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HHS HealthBeat (October 28, 2013)

Kids choking

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

Researchers say more than 30 children a day are treated in emergency departments for nonfatal cases of choking related to food. Dr. Gary Smith of Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio worked with colleagues at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to develop the estimate. It’s based on national data for children ages 14 and younger from 2001 through 2009.

"Candy accounted for one fourth of the choking episodes in the study, followed by meat and bones."

This study looked at nonfatal choking; Smith says a previous study that looked at fatal cases found the most likely causes are foods that completely block the airway, such as a hot dog, grape or round candy.

The study is in the journal Pediatrics.

Learn more at healthfinder.gov.

HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: October 28, 2013