Doctors remove nine magnets from girl's stomach

A 2-year-old girl ingested nine magnetized balls, similar to a now-banned toy called "Buckyballs."

HOUSTON -- A 2-year-old girl is fighting for her life after she ingested nine magnetized balls, similar to a now-banned toy called "Buckyballs."

The parents told KHOU they were unaware that the toy and similar products had been banned from the U.S. by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Monday, for the first time in 13 days, Ava Kendall took a breath on her own.

"The doctors were saying she probably wouldn't have made it 24 hours," said Lexi Kendall, the girl's mother.

Kendall said she listened to her mother instincts when doctors at an urgent care told her Ava only had a stomach flu. She told KHOU doctors ran multiple tests and couldn't pin-point what was causing the girl to be sick.

"(She) started clutching her stomach, screaming in pain," Kendall said.

She then took Ava to an emergency room, and a scan showed nine magnetized balls burrowed in her small intestines. Kendall said she immediately recognized the objects as part of a gift her husband had received from Sweden. He kept the trinket on top of his desk, a place they thought was out of reach from their children.

"I mean, it only takes a few seconds. I could've been in the back changing a diaper," Kendall said. "We didn't know how dangerous they were."

She was rushed to Texas Children's Hospital and went into a four-hour surgery.

"They burrow themselves in the soft tissue," Kendall said. "It created holes in her intestines."

Now Kendall wants to get the message out.

"Make sure all of that stuff is out of the way, because I don't want any parent or any other kid to go through what we have gone through, because it's awful," she said.

Doctors expect Ava to make a full recovery, but they have not told the family when Ava should be released from the hospital. If you'd like to help Ava and her family, visit her GoFundMe page.


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