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  • Writer's pictureSaundra Smyrski

Endoscopic Findings Associated w/ Button Battery Ingestion in Children

Key Points:

  • Foreign body (FB) ingestion is a very common problem in children and a cause for presentation to the emergency department (Rios et al., 2020).

  • Button batteries (BB) given their corrosive properties, can damage gastrointestinal (GI) mucosa and cause serious injury within a few hours.

  • 3 mechanisms of mucosal injury have been described for BBs:

  1. leakage of battery content directly corroding adjacent mucosa

  2. burns due to electric current

  3. necrosis due to direct compression

  • Esophageal mucosal lesion occurs within a very short time after ingestion, then current recommendation is BB removal within 2 hours of ingestion (Rios et al., 2020).

  • Button battery ingestion is an accident that occurs mainly at home and is more common in children younger than 6 years.

  • It is imperative to keep in mind that being asymptomatic does not rule out the presence of an FB and that mucosal damage may still be present.


Ríos, G., Rodríguez, L., Lucero, Y., Miquel, I., Arancibia, M. E., & Alliende, F. (2020). Endoscopic findings associated with button battery ingestion in children. Pediatric Emergency Care, 36(11), 523–526.

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