istockphoto.com / Ekaterina79
Accidentally (or intentionally) swallowing a LEGO is a rite of passage for kids these days, but what happens after that—besides a ton of worrying and a trip to the ER? A group of pediatric health care professionals set out to answer that very question in the name of science. These six docs each swallowed the common childhood delicacy–a LEGO figurine head to be specific–and found that a toy object like this passes through adults pretty easily. The study was recently published in the Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health.
On average, the LEGO head took 1.71 days to pass through the subjects’ systems. No complications arose. Oh, and if you couldn’t tell, these scientists have quite the sense of humor: pre-ingestion bowel habit was called the Stool Hardness and Transit (SHAT) score, while the final time it took to pass the object was called the Found and Retrieved Time (FART) score.
While researchers hope this helps us all relax a but more, they also don’t recommend searching your kids’ diaper for missing LEGOs.