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First Aid & Emergencies

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Battery Ingestion Treatment

Call 911 if the person is:

  • Having trouble breathing

1. Get Help Immediately

  • Call the National Battery Ingestion Hotline at 202-625-3333 (collect, if necessary) or Poison Control at 1-800-222-1222, or go to your local emergency department.
  • If possible, bring the battery package or a matching battery.
  • In most cases, you will be advised to get an X-ray immediately.

2. Keep the Person Safe

  • Do not let the person eat or drink until an X-ray has been done.

3. Follow Up

The next steps depend on the X-ray results.

  • If the X-ray shows the battery is in the esophagus, it will be removed immediately with an endoscopy.
  • If it shows the battery is in the stomach, the person may not need medical treatment. Call your doctor if the person develops fever, abdominal pain, vomiting, or blood in the stools.
  • An X-ray may be needed after 48 hours or more if there was no immediate treatment.


WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on October 15, 2015

First Aid A-Z

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