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Mum's horror as toddler 'lucky to be alive' after swallowing button battery

NewsMum's horror as toddler 'lucky to be alive' after swallowing button battery

A mum has issued a warning after her daughter almost died when she swallowed a button battery.

Lexi Mai Bortlam, three, swallowed the battery on Monday night, April 10.

Mum Chantelle Bortlam rushed Lexi Mai to the hospital, where an x-ray revealed the penny-size battery in her stomach.

Medics gave Lexi Mai honey to try to create a protective barrier between the battery and her stomach, and she has now been given the all-clear after the battery reappeared in her nappy on Wednesday, April 12, reports StokeonTrentLive.

Chantelle, from Bentilee, Stoke-on-Trent, had turned their home upside down after noticing the plastic battery cover on a toy wand had snapped and one of the three batteries was missing. It was then that Lexi Mai pointed to her mouth.

It comes after fellow Stoke-on-Trent mum Stacy-Marie Nicklin lost two-year-old daughter Harper-Lee Fanthorpe in May 2021 after she swallowed a button battery from a remote control.

Chantelle, aged 20, said: “My heart just went, I was really in tears. I had heard about Harper-Lee. It is difficult, with hearing of another child swallowing a battery and dying. My family were all constantly messaging and stressing, I was in tears.”

She added: “I was watching her 24/7. Every time she had a poo, I checked her nappy, the second time, it did come out.

“The state that the battery was in when it came out really worried me. It was corroded and black and green.

“It was terrifying. They said that if it hadn’t come out and it had got jammed, they would have had to talk to the consultant and find out what the next step was going to be. It could have ended up in a different situation.

“The battery cover isn’t safe at all. The screw is still in the toy, the cover snapped. Inside, the batteries weren’t even protected properly. It was horrible. All batteries out of all the toys have now been binned.”

In a warning, Chantelle added: “When kids are playing with toys, make sure the batteries are in them securely. Toy stores need to look at the age ranges, this toy said 0-3, but it is not acceptable.

“These toys have loose parts, batteries exposed, they are not very safe for children at all, they should be 6+. They should not sell kids’ toys with button batteries in full-stop.”

Stacy-Marie set up the Harper-Lee Foundation to raise awareness about the dangers of button batteries.

She is campaigning for Harper-Lee’s Law to be introduced which calls for button batteries to be banned from children’s goods such as toothbrushes, books and birthday cards.

Stacy-Marie said: “This is the second child in Stoke-on-Trent in two years that has swallowed a button battery. I know how that mum was feeling.

“Their family is very lucky, their little girl is OK. Mine passed away. Parents please check, check and check again.”

Child Accident Prevention Trust reports at least two children a year have died as a result of swallowing lithium coin cell batteries in this country.

Great Ormond Street Hospital reports that they see one child a month with significant internal burns caused by swallowing a button battery.

Data is unavailable for how many children are admitted to A&E after swallowing a button battery.

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