Cleveland added, "The marked age is 4 and up, so they're not supposed to be around toddlers. We've sold all types of balls, probably for like eight years. We've never had a problem, shipping millions of units."
In fact, 80 to 90 percent of foreign bodies pass through children's digestive systems on their own without problems, 10 to 20 percent require removal with a non-invasive scope, and fewer than 1 percent require surgery.
While most cases of foreign body ingestion in children don't cause a problem, these toys are different.
The unique growth rates of these polymer balls and the fact that they cannot be seen on X-rays present a challenge for doctors.
"We are trying to sound the alarm as the prevalence of the balls is increasing," said Olutoye. "While they are fun and make good science projects, [they] can have disastrous consequence when ingested."
Still, Aunraya was lucky that someone had seen her swallow something. She had prompt surgery. She did well and went home four days after the operation.