Amalgam Removal Does Lower
the Body Burden of Mercury
Australian Risk Assessment of Mercury
Exposure from Dental Amalgam Published August 2000
Prepared by Chem Affairs Pty Ltd PO Box 890 Lane Cove NSW 1595
Published August 2000
This risk assessment was commissioned by the National Health & Medical Research
Council of Australia (NHMRC), as part of a series of recommendations put forward by a
working party which was set up in 1998 to assess the literature about the dangers of
mercury from dental amalgam. NH&MRC have not yet endorsed this document. Although
most of the report claims safety for amalgam on the bases of a supposed "Normal Mercury
Level" in the body it is important to know that there has never been a level of mercury
exposure which is considered safe. The “Normal” levels suggested in this report are far above
the levels set by both the USEPA and the ATSDR.
In point 8 of the Executive Summary the following is stated:
"Amalgam removal has been shown to be effective in reducing mercury levels to the
levels of those in people without amalgam fillings. Chelation treatment has also reduced
levels in the short-term….in one case report, amalgam removal has reduced a very
high urine mercury level to a normal level. This change was accompanied by a decline
Potential Biological Consequences of Mercury Released from Dental Amalgam. A
State of the Art Document?
The Australian and other dental associations in the world have consistently claimed that
removing amalgam for the sake of health improvements is unethical as there is no
relationship between mercury from dental amalgam and disease. They still hold this
position. Much of their claims of late are based on a report called "Potential Biological
Consequences of Mercury Released from Dental Amalgam. A State of the Art
Document. [MFR-panel (Swedish Medical Research Council)]A State of the Art Conference
in Stockholm 9-10 April 1992”.
The dental associations come to the following conclusions, which are responded to by Prof.
Murray Vimy, one of the leaders of the International Academy of Oral Medicine and
Toxicology. Note Prof Vimy's credentials - Murray J. Vimy BA, DMD, FAGD, FIAOMT
Clinical Associate Professor Department of Medicine
Dental Association Comments:
"- Mercury released from dental amalgam does not, according to available data, contribute
to systemic disease or systemic toxicological effects.
No significant effects on the immune system have been demonstrated with the amounts of
mercury which may be released from dental amalgam fillings.
- Allergic reactions to mercury from amalgam have been demonstrated, but are extremely
• In very few individuals local reactions such as lichenoid reactions of the mucosa,
may occur adjacent to amalgam restorations as well as adjacent to dental
restorations made of other materials.
• There are no data supporting that mercury released from dental amalgam give rise
to teratological effects.
• The possible environmental consequences of mercury from handling dental
amalgam can be controlled by proper waste management, including the installation
of efficient amalgam separators in dental offices.
• Available data do not justify discontinuing the use of silver-containing dental
amalgam fillings or recommending their replacement."
In the panel: Bergman B (chairman), Bostrom H, Larsson K S, Li5e H
Professor Vimy’s Response:
In An open letter to Sekreterare Tore Scherstén Medicinska Forskningsrådet Swedish
Medical Research Council Box 6713 S-113 85 Stockholm, Sweden December 15, 1992
Re: Potential Biological Consequences of Mercury Released from Dental Amalgam. A
Swedish state of the Art Conference,
April 9, 1992.
Dear Secretary Scherstén:
By now you must have felt the pressure of a number of groups who have criticized your
"conference". In fairness to you, it is apparent that trust was misplaced in an organizing
committee, which had no intention of convening an objective academic scientific forum.
Rather, these individuals had a predetermined agenda, as demonstrated by their public
positions on the issue of amalgam safety taken on many occasions prior to this meeting.
Drs. Larsson, Löe and Bergman are all on the record as defenders of the status quo. Dr.
Bergman's objectivity is tainted by his wife's involvement in the issue; while Dr. Larsson is
on the record as a strong supporter of amalgam. Indeed it was incredible to see this person
act as both presenter and "judge", especially since he has no scientific experimental track
record of his own to demonstrate his expertise in this area. Finally, Dr. Löe, politically,
administratively and economically affiliated with the American dental establishment, is
apparently more concerned with preventing litigation in the U.S.A. than he is with
determining scientific truth. His opening biased remarks made it obvious why he was chosen
as moderator. Dr. Boström was red herring - a physician "yes"-man with absolutely no
research expertise in this area.
The conference presenters showed a general lack of expertise. Most have poor research
records and many had not published research papers on either mercury or dental amalgam.
This is easily determined by reviewing the bibliographies to their written presentations.
They have few if any research papers of their own to cite! The penultimate example was Dr.
Petr Skrabanek, a self anointed "quack catcher". This individual, who has no scientific
expertise of amalgam, is one of a growing group of self appointed watch-dog "experts". In
North America, we have an organization called the National Council Against Health Fraud
which purports to be expert in everything. Dr. Skrabanek's mere presence at the meeting
totally discredited the scientific purpose of the conference. Sweden, a country of many
noted scientists, was better represented by the quality of the expertise in the audience
than by the quality of many conference speakers.
Finally, I understand that my invitation to present a paper at this conference was extended
reluctantly by the organizing committee, and only after political pressure for a more
balanced meeting. If you review the list of speakers chosen it will be obvious that the
intention of the organizers was to "white wash" the conclusions. The conclusions of the
conference were drawn by the organizing committee and do not represent a consensus view
of all the participants or the audience. Since the results were apparently prordained, as I
have just described, they are not credible.
I have enclosed for your information a reprint of a recent medical scientific forum on the
same issue (Goering et. al., 1992). As you can see, there is now international scientific
concurrence on a number of points related to the amalgam mercury issue and its potential
effects on human health; a concurrence which is in marked contrast to the "massaged"
conclusions of the Swedish Medical Research Council's biased organizing committee.
Respectfully yours, [signed Murray J. Vimy BA, DMD, FAGD, FIAOMT Clinical Associate
Professor Department of Medicine (also Private Practice of Dental Medicine)]
A vast wealth of published research exists which clearly demonstrates that removing the
source of the mercury poisoning – the amalgam fillings – will in fact lower the body burden
of mercury. Here is a small taste of this literature:
1. Idiosyncrasy to metallic mercury,
with special reference to amalgam
fillings in the Teeth. Bass M HJ Pediat
2. Thrombocytopenia in two children
after placement of amalgam fillings in
primary teeth. Berglund F, Elinder G
Program, Sammanfattningar, Svenska
Läkarsällskapets Riksstämma 27-29
3. Mercury allergy resulting from
amalgam restorations. Engelman M A J
Amer Dent Assoc 66:122-123 (1963 )
4. Chronic illness in association with
dental amalgam: Report of two cases.
Godfrey M E J Adv Med 3:247-255
5. Amalgam-related chronic ulceration
of oral mucosa. Jolly M, Moule A J,
Freeman S Br Dent J 160:434- 437
6. Exercise-induced anaphylaxis:
improvement after removal of
amalgam in dental caries. Katsununa
T, Iikura Y, Nagakura T, Saitoh H,
Akimoto K, Akasawa A, Kindaichi S Ann
Allergy 64:472-475 (1990)
7. A Case of High Mercury exposure
from Dental Amalgam. Langworth S,
Strömberg R European Journal of Oral
Sciences. Jun 1996; 104(3):320-321.
ISSN: 0909- 8836
8. Urticaria following a dental silver
filling - case report. Markow H New
York State J Med 43:1648-1652 (1943)
9. Three cases of linear lichen planus
cused by dental metal compounds. :
Sasaki G, Yokozeki H, Katayama I,
Nishioka K: J Dermatol 1996 Dec
10. Generalized allergic reaction from
silver amalgam fillings Strassburg M,
Schubel R : Dtsche Zahnarztliche Zeit
11. A case of hypersensitivity to
mercury released from amalgam
fillings. Witek E Source: Czas Stomat
12. Allergic reaction to mercury after
dental treatment. Wright F A C New
Zealand Dent J 67:25l-252 (1971)
13. Description of persons with
symptoms presumed to be caused by
electricity or visual display units--oral
aspects. Bergdahl J, Anneroth G,
Stenman E Scand J Dent Res. 1994
Feb; 102(1): 41-5
14. Long-term mercury excretion in
urine after removal of amalgam fillings
Begerow J, Zander D, Freier I,
Dunemann L Int Arch Occup Environ
Health 1994 66:3 209-12
15. Effect of Replacement of Dental
Amalgam on Oral Lichenoid Reactions.
Bratel J, Hakeberg M, Jontell M:
Journal of Dentistry. Jan-Mar 1996;
16. Mercury sensitization in amalgam
fillings. Assessment from a
dermatologic viewpoint Brehler R,
Panzer B, Forck G, Bertram H P Dtsch
Med Wochenschr 1993 Apr 2 118:13
17. Healing of Lichenoid Reactions
Following Removal of Amalgam - a
Clinical Follow-up Henriksson E,
Mattsson U, Håkansson J:. J Clin
Periodont 22(4):287-294 (1995)
18. The Relevance and Effect of
Amalgam Replacement in Subjects with
Oral Lichenoid Reactions Ibbotson S H,
Speight E L, Macleod R I, Smart E R,
Lawrence C M British Journal of
Dermatology. Mar 1996; 134 (3):420-
423. ISSN: 0007-0963
19. Resolution of oral lichenoid lesions
after replacement of amalgam
restorations in patients allergic to
mercury compounds.: Laine J, Kalimo
K, Forssell H, Happonen R P Br J
20. Symptoms before and after proper
amalgam removal in relation to serumglobulin
reaction to metals.
Lichtenberg H Journal of
Orthomolecular Medicine Vol 11 No.4.
pp 195-203 1996.
21. Effects of Removing Amalgam
Fillings from Patients with Diseases
Affecting the Immune SystemLindqvist
B, Mörnstad H Medical Science
Research. May 1996; 24(5):355-356
22. Allergy and corrosion of dental
materials in patients with oral lichen
planus. Lundström I M C Int J Oral
Surg 13:16-24 (1984)
23. Amalgam Associated Oral Lichenoid
Reactions: Clinical and Histologic
Changes After Removal of Amalgam
Fillings. Östman P O, Anneroth G,
Skoglund A Oral Surgery Oral Medicine
Oral Pathology Oral Radiology and
Endodontics. Apr 1996; 81 (4):459-
24. Resolution of lichen planus
following removal of amalgam
restorations in patients with proven
allergy to mercury salts: a pilot study.
Smart E R, Macleod R I, Lawrence C M
Br Dent J 178(3):108-112 (1995)
25. The contribution of dental amalgam
to mercury in blood. Snapp K R, Boyer
D B, Peterson L C, Svare C W J Dent
Res. 1989 May; 68(5):780-5
26. Removal of Dental Mercury: Often
an Effective Treatment for the Very
Sensitive Patient Zamm A F J
Orthomolecular Med 5(53):138-142
27. Elimination of symptoms by
removal of dental amalgam from
mercury poisoned patients, as
compared with a control group of
average patients. Lichtenberg H J J
Orthomol Med 8:145-148 (1993)
28. Mercury, selenium, and glutathione
peroxidase before and after amalgam
removal in man. Molin M, Bergman B,
Marklund S L, Schütz A, Skerfving Acta
Odontol Scand. 1990 Jun; 48(3): 189-
29. The relationship between mercury
from dental amalgam and oral cavity
health. Siblerud R LAnn Dent 49(2):6-
30. A comparison of mental health of
multiple sclerosis patients with
silver/mercury dental fillings and those
with fillings removed. Siblerud R L
Psychol Rep. 1992 Jun; 70(3 Pt 2):
31. Evidence that mercury from silver
dental fillings may be an etiological
factor in multiple sclerosis. Siblerud R
L, Kienholz E Sci Total Environ. 1994
Mar 15; 142(3): 191-205
32. Mercury-Specific Lymphocytes: An
Indication of Mercury Allergy in Man.
Stejskal V, Forsbeck M, Cederbrant K
E, Asteman O J of Clin Immun, Vol. 16,
No.1, 1996, pp. 31-40.