FDA Panel Deliberates the Health Effects of Mercury Fillings

bigstock-Mercury-hg--145233a copyTwo days of hearings in Gaithersburg, Md. ended last week with a recommendation from the advisory panel that the FDA examine all relevant scientific studies and evidence presented pertaining to Mercury fillings.

In four petitions submitted by various consumer and dental groups, there has been some indication that the FDA’s decisions regarding mercury fillings are flawed and based upon insufficient data to draw conclusions.  Specifically, when dealing with a very sensitive subpopulation such as: pregnant women, unborn children, children under 6 and mercury-sensitive adults.

What the panel has come away with is: “a lot more needs to be learned before any decision can be made.  In speaking about how to best measure the amount of mercury that people with amalgams are exposed to, the panel’s chair cautioned that any model that they come up with would be provisional until sufficient data is collected”.

Experts assembled provided their expertise on:

1. How best to measure mercury exposure,

2. What level is it safe, and,

3. How to weigh that evidence.

Incidentally, the FDA has approximately 6 months to respond to the panel’s findings but does not have to accept its recommendations.

According to Bob Reeves, a Lexington, Ky., attorney who has spent the last 30 years fighting against mercury fillings (this is the law office that invited me to attend these hearings), called the advisory panel “amazingly fair-handed” and predicted that the FDA would not be able to ignore this group due to the intense media coverage this issue is generating.

Suresh Kotagal, MD of the Mayo Clinic spoke emphatically:

There is no place for mercury in children.  The bottom line is, do no harm.  We have to start with that and take it from there”.

Having worked in a dental office and been subjected to mercury vapors for many years first as a dental assistant and then as a dental hygienist, I think that a very interesting study would be to look at dental office workers, their length of employment, type of disease contracted and the date of symptom onset.  This to my mind is a sub-group that most definitely needs to be studied as well!

As always, I love getting feedback. Here on my blog, you will get commentluv. That’s a plug-in that allows you to leave a link back to your own site when you leave a comment.

Until next time,



6 thoughts on “FDA Panel Deliberates the Health Effects of Mercury Fillings

  1. Kathleen,
    Thanks for the Article. I wish they would come up with some conclusive evidence either way to finally put the issue to rest, although I think regardless of the findings the general public has moved on from metal fillings.

  2. I have worked in a dental office for years! I am patiently awaiting some research on the damaging effects of my chosen career. I would imagine that there would be ways to reduce harmful effects. I think about my exposure to potentially harmful chemicals quite often. If anyone has more information about any further related studies, please pass it on!

  3. Hello Grace and other concerned dental professionals,

    You should be concerned! It is because of personal health problems and concerns that I opened my own environmentally friendly/holistic Dental Hygiene practice. I recommend that your read “Whole Body Dentistry” by Dr. Mark Breiner, check out the Eco-Dentistry Association Website
    http://ecodentistry.org/ and become familiar with all the Material Safety Data Sheets in your Health and Safety Manual (WHMIS in Canada and OSHA in the United States) and then do your own research on these as well.

    I have been in discussion with a number of other dental professionals and we all agree that someone needs to do a study on disease occurrence in dental offices as it relates to products, materials and processes used.

    In Health,


  4. Kathleen.
    I am a strong advocate against the use of mercury fillings. I mean what sense does it make to worry about the levels of mercury in fish we digest and then have a mercury filling 5 inches from our brain 24/7

    if you get a chance go to youtube and search “smoking teeth” scary stuff

    canker sore treatment´s last blog post ..Canker Sore Home Remedies

  5. Hi Tim,

    Thanks for your comment and mentioning the smoking tooth video on youtube. I have seen it and would encourage everyone to check it out. Very scary indeed!

    In Health,


  6. Hi Mesa Dentist and thanks for your comment.

    Unfortunately, I wish this were true. I actually saw a new client recently who at ten years old had a mouth full of amalgams. I would also suggest that you read my blog next week as I am speaking about the FDA revisiting the mercury amalgam issue once again.

    In Health,


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