• The total number of foreign body injury cases inserted in the Susy Safe Registry : 37314
  • Choking Hazard Surveys from Italy: 864
  • Choking Hazard Surveys from Argentina: 236

The Susy Safe project

Surveillance System on Foreign Body Injuries in Children

Suffocation due to foreign bodies (FB) is a leading cause of death in children aged 0-3 and it is common also in older ages, up to 14 years. Recent data indicates that the estimated number of incidents per year in children aged 0-14 is in EU of about 50.000, 1% of which are fatal. Among them, about 10.000 accidents involve inorganic objects, in general industrial products, mostly plastic and metal parts, coins, and toys. Out of the estimated 2.000 incidents per year involving toys, the fatalities are about 20.

Susy Safe is a surveillance registry for injuries due to food and non-food foreign body ingestion, aspiration, inhalation or insertion (corresponding to ICD9 codes 930 to 939) gathering data from all EU countries and beyond, in order to:

  1. provide a risk-analysis profile for each of the products causing the injury with the aim of:
    • creating a surveillance systems for suffocation injuries caused to young consumers by inappropriate product design or packaging;
    • helping to guarantee the safety of consumers, indicating products whose risk profile is clearly not compatible with a safe fruition of the product itself;
    • providing the EU Commission with comparative data on risk/benefit of each of the products causing the injuries, in order to weight acceptable risks versus the foreseen economic impact of recalling the product involved from the market;
  2. provide an evaluation of how socio-economic disparities among EU citizens may affect the likelihood of being injured by FB ingestion, with the aim of implementing specific educational activities on safe behaviour and active parental guard with regards to the specific products causing the injury;
  3. involve, as appropriate, Consumer Associations and/or National Market Surveillance Authorities in data collection and proper education of consumers, allowing a precise estimate of the risk profiles for those products which are actually causing the injury, but, because of the low impact in terms of child health (self resolved FB ingestions) are usually under reported and not known in the official clinical discharge data.

Cases will be anonymously reported from physicians, ORL experts, pneumologists, general practitioners, using a standardized Web form. In order to participate, the investigators need to subscribe to the project.
Main scientific papers using the overall data will be published using the formula "The SUSY SAFE Working Group", with a list of all enrolling centers, recognizing in this way the contribution of each investigator as a co-author.