The chemical covering the beads, which allows them to stick together after they are put in water, has injured at least two children in Australia. In the first case, a 20-month-old child became dizzy, vomited several times and slipped into a coma for a short-period of time, reports the CPSC. A second child also vomited, temporarily slipped into a coma and was hospitalized for five days.
Perhaps even more frightening is that doctors in the original incident mistook the symptoms for a metabolic illness and speculated that family members were poisoning the child, reports The New York Times . It took four weeks of medical detective work by Dr. Kevin Carpenter, a biochemical geneticist in Sydney, to figure out that Australia’s Toy of the Year, which is called Bindeez in that country, was the culprit.
That begs a serious question: Have American children been getting sick from these toys but the symptoms not recognized? It’s hard to imagine that more kids haven’t swallowed these toy beads, which are extremely popular this year.