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International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology Status Report on Mercury Amalgam

20 June 1995


The International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology (IAOMT) imperatively
petitions the International Governments to cease and/or restrict the use of mercury-containing dental “fillings” (also commonly referred to as “silver amalgam” or “dental amalgam”).

The position of the IAOMT is based primarily upon the increasing concern in the medical community over POTENTIAL health risks which may be associated with patient exposure to mercury vapor from “dental amalgam.” These concerns are based upon the convincing scientific medical research which has been published in peer-reviewed journals. A review of this subject has recently been published in the FASEB Journal (Mercury Exposure from “Silver” Tooth Fillings: The merging Evidence Questions A Traditional Dental Paradigm,
FASEB J., 9:504-508, 1995)

A specific concern is the medical research from three animal experiments and one human source which have confirmed the transfer of mercury from the “fillings” of pregnant females into the tissues of fetuses.

The governments of Austria, Finland, Germany and Sweden have already announced plans to stop or limit the use of “dental mercury amalgams.” Furthermore, after sustaining unrelenting pressure from concerned citizens groups, the Government of Canada has assented to place the “mercury amalgam” issue under review by regulatory authorities. These above positions, along with those of the medical research scientists, are in direct contradiction to the contentions of the dental profession at large, which adamantly professes that mercury exposure from dental amalgam is harmless, except in rare individuals who are sensitive to mercury.

Advocation of cessation of the use of “mercury dental fillings” must also be accompanied by addressing a concern for the appropriate removal of the “fillings.” It is sufficiently documented that the removal of dental mercury amalgam, for any reason, can generate high amounts of mercury vapour. Because of the stringent requirements for the proper removal of dental mercury, the IAOMT has developed a “Standard of Care” program. This program has been established primarily for the protection of the dental patients and secondarily for dental healthcare personnel.

It should be further noted that lately, increasing attention is being directed, by clinical dental practitioners, towards “DETOXIFICATION” from mercury exposure. Some of the procedures which are being advocated by these practitioners do not have a valid scientific foundation. The IAOMT urges health care practitioners to approach the issue of detoxification with care and caution.

Because of the nature of academic clinical training, the dental profession at large, is very inadequately prepared to address concerns about “dental mercury amalgam.” Therefore, the IAOMT is in the process of developing a “Clinical Certification Program” to redress this subject matter. This program, directed by qualified IAOMT members, will promote instruction and certification of clinical practitioners in the “IAOMT Standards of Care” for mercury amalgam removal. Although individual practitioners may utilize various protocols in their clinical practices, the IAOMT recognizes and supports only those therapies which have a valid SCIENTIFIC orientation.

The International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology is exceptionally gratified to have been instrumental in supporting scientific medical research aimed at clarifying this long standing issue of dental mercury toxicity. Our primary goal has been directed at providing a SCIENTIFIC RESPONSE to the continuing controversy. In doing so, we have achieved worldwide credibility for our efforts.

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