Last updated: 07:32 PM ET, Sat January 16 2016

Toddler Swallows Poisonous Seed, Almost Dies on Caribbean Cruise

Impacting Travel | Amy Coyne Bredeson | January 16, 2016

Toddler Swallows Poisonous Seed, Almost Dies on Caribbean Cruise

PHOTO: Crab's Eye plant. (photo via Wikimedia Commons)

A toddler nearly died after swallowing a poisonous seed on a Caribbean cruise, according to the Associated Press.

Samantha Gandy of Monroe, La., said her daughter had swallowed a bead from a necklace her grandmother had received on a previous cruise from a vendor at the dock in Montego Bay, Jamaica, the AP said.

When Gandy awoke Wednesday morning, her 2-year-old daughter, Audrey, had a high fever and was drooling, AP reported.

The necklace was made from the seeds of a Crab's Eye plant, a toxic plant that is commonly used in making jewelry.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, if ingested, Crab’s Eye, or abrin, can cause “burning pain" in the digestive tract; bloody vomit, stool and urine; inflammation and bleeding in the stomach and intestines; and at worst, "multi-system organ failure, collapse of the blood vessels ... shock, and death.” 

The CDC says abrin is an extremely toxic plant protein and exposure to a small amount can be fatal.

When the ship arrived Thursday in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the toddler was rushed to a hospital, where her mother was told by doctors that Audrey could’ve died, the AP said.

Gandy said tests confirmed the child had been poisoned by a crab's eye necklace, according to the AP.

Carnival and hospital officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment Saturday, the AP said.


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