Scientists swallow Lego pieces to judge whether they are damaging for children

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"Although the majority of items children swallow pass through, some can be unsafe and parents should still be vigilant", Dr Tagg said. Scientists swallow toy heads to solve burning question Six curious scientists have answered a weird call of doodie to explore how long it takes for a piece of Lego, the children's toy, to complete its wonderful journey through the body once it's been swallowed.

As a parent, you'll know full well that kids frequently pick up and try to swallow small objects - most noticeably bits of Lego.

Despite the best efforts of parents, children are prone to swallowing small plastic toys - usually prompting a visit to the doctor. A reference, in case you haven't seen the film, to the song "Everything Is AWESOME!" as well as the pediatricians' blog Don't Forget the Bubbles. And yes, the scientific method used in the study may sound disgusting and risky.

The Shat score assessed the consistency or changes in the stool while the Fart score recorded the number of days.

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Based on their Stool Hardness and Transit scores and their Found and Retrieved Time (appropriately abbreviated to FART) scores, the average journey in this small sample group was 1.7 days - although one paediatrician searched hopefully for two weeks without finding the lost yellow head.

For the experiment, all six researchers scarfed down a Lego figurine head before documenting the outcome. Alternatively, the missing toy might lurk in the doctor's bowels for years and years, the authors joked. "There was really only one way to find out", the authors said.

"This will reassure parents, and the authors advocate that no parent should be expected to search through their child's feces to prove object retrieval". According to the publication, the aim was to "determine typical transit times" for an item that's commonly swallowed by children - Lego.

Since they were eating toys and poking through their own poop the team made a decision to have a bit of fun with the nomenclature.

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