Ban this killer jelly
A consultant pathologist has urged the authorities to ban cup jelly candy as it poses a high suffocation risk among children. Prof Dr Kasinathan Nadesan of the University Malaya Medical Centre told The Malay Mail that most children sucked the jelly straight from its container after lifting the tab. Due to the texture of the jelly, it gets sucked straight into the throat and this may cause children to choke.
“If the blockage is not cleared quickly the victim may die within minutes,” Dr Nadesan said when asked to comment on the death of three-year-old Wong Poh Yan on Sunday.
Poh Yan was riding a bicycle accompanied by her Indonesian maid near her house in Seri Petaling when she choked on the candy, the second piece she had within minutes. The maid tried to dig out the candy using her fingers but failed. The girl was pronounced dead when she was taken to a nearby clinic by her father. A post-mortem at the UMMC on Monday revealed that the candy was lodged in her throat between the larynx and vocal chords. Checks by The Malay Mail at shops near the victim’s house showed several brands of the jelly on sale at RM1.20 for a packet of 20 cups.
Dr Nadesan said what happened to Poh Yan is not an isolated case. He said there have been similar cases in the past year, although he could not give details.
“That is why I am calling for a ban on this particular type of jelly which is sucked by children,” he said.
“Meanwhile, parents should supervise their children when this jelly is consumed.”
Asked what was the best way to help a child who is choking, Dr Nadesan said the child has to be held by the legs, upside-down and slapped hard on the back, just below the neck.
“This is the most effective and the fastest way to dislodge the foreign object from the throat. There is no point running to a doctor at that time, as every second counts,” he said.
“The child could end up dead by the time he or she gets medical attention.”
Poh Yan, the youngest of four children, was cremated yesterday at the Cheras crematorium.
Note1: This story was published in Malay Mail on 24th November by Marhalim Abas
Note2:Contrary to what Dr Nadesan was quoted in the above item about holding a choking child upside down and slapping hard on the back just below the neck,
The Heimlich Institute recommends:
Don’t slap the victim’s back. (This could make matters worse.)
The Heimlich Manoeuvre is an option which may work better.
How to do the Heimlich Manoeuvre:
The Heimlich Manoeuvre for CHOKING INFANTS
A choking victim can’t speak or breathe and needs your help immediately.
Follow these steps to help a choking infant:
1. Lay the child down, face up, on a firm surface and kneel or stand at the victim’s feet, or hold infant on your lap facing away from you.
2. Place the middle and index fingers of both your hands below his rib cage and above his navel.
3. Press into the victim’s upper abdomen with a quick upward thrust; do not squeeze the rib cage. Be very gentle.
4. Repeat until object is expelled.
5. If the Victim has not recovered, proceed with CPR. The Victim should see a physician immediately after rescue.
6. See a physician immediately after rescue.
Ban this killer jelly