Doctors save life of baby who swallowed Advil 'candy'

Baby loses consciousness after swallowing 11 times the maximum dosage for his age.

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Hadassah Mount Scopus pediatric emergency room director Dr. David Rekhtman
Hadassah Mount Scopus pediatric emergency room director Dr. David Rekhtman
Hadassah spokesperson

Doctors saved the life of a baby who lost consciousness after swallowing a children's Advil pill intended for pain and fever relief.

The baby was brought to Hadassah Hospital on Mount Scopus, where Dr. David Rekhtman received him and his parents in the pediatric emergency room.

Dr. Rekhtman quickly performed diagnostic tests to rule out multi-factor poisoning. He found that the baby had swallowed 11 times the maximum dosage for his age.

As the baby struggled for his life, emergency room staff quickly administered the necessary treatments, stabilizing his condition, providing fluids, and activated carbon.

Activated carbon is carbon with low-volume pores which absorbs and distances several chemicals, including various ingested poisons.

Professor Yacko Berkun, who manages the hospital's pediatric ward, emphasized that "effective teamwork is what saved this baby, who arrived in a life-threatening situation. This is what prevented the baby's condition from deteriorating and forcing us to provide him with breathing assistance. I can say with certainty that the medical staff saved this baby's life."

"The pills the baby swallowed were purchased in the US and intended for children," Dr. Berkun said. "They were designed to look like candies, colorful and sweet. Despite the advantage of providing a medication which tastes good, there is a significant risk if children find these medications and think, like Yossi did, that they are candies."

"It should be unnecessary to reiterate that medications need to be kept out of children's reach, preferably in a high, locked closet. In the special school in our pediatric ward, we teach various medical topics, most of them developed by the school's amazing staff, who have won several awards of excellence. Some of our lessons are devoted to safety issues, including the issue of medicine."

After the treatment was completed, the baby was transferred to the pediatric intensive care unit, under the car of Dr. Rivka Brocks.

"He'll recover quickly here," she said. "After he was treated successfully, his condition quickly stabilized, and lab tests confirmed that he is back to himself. He suffered no permanent damage to his liver, kidneys, or digestive tract, and we were able to send him home."

"We were really lucky," Yossi's father said. "From the staff's quick reaction to the emergency rescue teams - everyone was great. It's very scary to see your child with dropping oxygen levels and to see him lose consciousness. It's inspiring to see how these experts did exactly what was necessary to stop the deterioration and save him."

"I've never been so happy to hear my son cry. When I heard him cry, I knew he was okay. He was transferred to the intensive care unit after he stabilized, and they were really helpful there as well. Within the trauma of what happened, we definitely had a good experience."