Mum's warning after toddler swallows 16 magnetic balls: 'Long and heartbreaking road'

Photos: An x-ray revealed Konin had swallowed 16 small magnetic balls. GoFundMe
Photos: An x-ray revealed Konin had swallowed 16 small magnetic balls. GoFundMe 

A two-year-old boy has undergone extensive surgery and been placed on a feeding tube after accidentally swallowing 16 small magnets. 

His mother, Hannah Arrington from Florida in the US, is warning other parents about the dangers of magnetic toys after her son, Konin, ingested the 'Bucky Ball Magnets' last month.

According to her fundraising page, Konin was 'rushed to hospital' after the incident on May 18 where he underwent several operations including a laparotomy and the removal of three feet of his small intestines.

"His recovery has been difficult as he has lost over 30 per cent of his body weight due to Small Bowel Syndrome and an infection post surgery,' she wrote. "This has been a long and heartbreaking road as we take this day by day."

Speaking to CNN, the mum-of-five said Konin found the pieces of the toy, commonly known as a Buckyball or Buckycube, after one of his older siblings brought it home from school in April. 

'Buckyballs' are marketed as desk toys or stress relievers for adults and composed of multiple small, 'super-strong' magnetic balls.

While the parents immediately threw out the toy as soon as they discovered it, unfortunately it was too late.

Photo: The toddler has undergone several operations on his abdomen and had a feeding tube inserted. GoFundMe

Photo: The toddler has undergone several operations on his abdomen and had a feeding tube inserted. GoFundMe

The toddler began experiencing stomach pain, so his parents brought him to the emergency room, where an X-ray revealed the problem. 

"On the X-ray, it showed a line that almost looked like a pull chain cord for a fan," Arrington told CNN.  

Advertisement

"As he ate them, they went down into his digestive tract, and then each time he would find another one somewhere in the house and swallow it, it would click together and it perforated a hole through his stomach all the way down into his colon area," Arrington revealed to KMBC News.

Arrington and her husband have been forced to stop work due to 'the severity of Konin's issues', and are seeking help for medical bills.

"I am out of work indefinitely at this time as I am at the hospital with Konin. My husband Ken is a service tech but has had to take this time off to care for the other 4 children now that school  is out," she wrote. "Prayers are our number one need right now. But as our world has stopped, life goes on and bills are due"

In an update to the fundraising site on June 15, Arrington said Konin was still in hospital with further complications and 'issues with his abdomen' and undergoing more CT scans and ultrasounds. 

Her warning to other parents is clear. 

"I don't think parents understand the amount of seriousness these desk toys have," the mum-of-five told CNN. "Parents shouldn't have to worry that their kids are going to bring a toy home that could kill a younger sibling. ... You can die from it, you can have lifelong issues from it, because look where we are."