Millions of Americans kicked off the summer grilling season by firing up the barbecue this Memorial Day. The first step is usually scraping off last year’s crusty residue, which can make your burgers and buns taste bitter.
But did you know a grill brush could send you to the emergency room?
Loose bristles can fall off the brush, stick to the grill, and get into grilled food. When people eat the food, the bristle can injure the mouth, throat, stomach, and intestines.
Victims have developed life-threatening intestinal perforations, infections, abscesses, and many of them required surgery.
Grill brush injuries sent about 1,700 people to the emergency room between 2002 and 2014, according to a new study released by the University of Missouri School of Medicine.
The data suggests that about 134 people per year are injured by accidentally eating grill brush bristles. In many cases, people do not realize they swallowed a bristle unless it causes pain.
What Should I Do?
- Buy high-quality grill brushes with a scraper blade
- Examine the brush before using it
- Throw the brush away if bristles appear loose
- Check the gill for bristles before using it
- Consider another method of cleaning your grill