Cinnamon Challenge Warning

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Story Updated: Apr 22, 2013

WSIL -- Doctors are warning teenagers to stay away from the cinnamon challenge.

The dangerous stunt has been depicted in YouTube videos in which someone swallows a spoonful of ground cinnamon in 60 seconds without water.

Doctors say swallowing a lot of cinnamon can lead to breathing trouble and even collapsed lungs. Last year, at least 30 teens needed medical attention.

"When you try to swallow a dry substance like cinnamon you end up potentially aspirating. So, you could get some irritation to the back of your throat. You can actually end up with some problems with your lungs because you inhale the substance rather than swallowing it," said Dr. Elaine Schulte.

There can also be long-lasting lesions, scarring, and inflammation of the airway.