DENTAL AMALGAM MERCURY SYNDROME ............................

DAMS Intl.    St Paul, Mn, 55015                                         


Studies Document that amalgam dental fillings are the largest source of both inorganic and organic mercury in most people.


Peer-reviewed medical studies and thousands of clinical tests by Medical Labs have documented that:


1. The daily mercury exposure (measured in saliva and feces) for those with amalgam dental fillings is on average more than 10 times higher than those  without amalgam fillings.


2.  Amalgam is the largest source of mercury exposure in most people- both for inorganic and organic mercury.


3. Amalgam is also a major source of the high levels of mercury in all U.S. sewer plants and in lakes, rivers, and fish 


4. Millions of people in the U.S. have dangerous levels of mercury exposure and millions of women of child bearing age have levels high enough to make birth defects and developmental disorders in infants likely.



The reference average level of mercury in feces (dry weight) for those tested at Doctors Data Lab with amalgam fillings is .26 mg/kg, compared to the reference average level for those without amalgam fillings of .02 mg/kg(10). (13 times that of the population w/o amalgam).   A  Swedish lab that does fecal tests for mercury had similar results(10).   Government and Scientific panels have confirmed amalgam is the number one source of mercury in most people and affects millions(24,FS 1-8).

In a large study of a group with amalgams, a group without amalgams, and a group that had undergone amalgam replacement-   using saliva mercury measurements, it was concluded that amalgam is the main source of organic mercury in most people. Those with amalgams on average had more than 4 times as much organic mercury as either group without amalgam. Those with amalgam had over 10 times the total mercury as those without(11).  And mercury from fish was controlled for in the study and not a factor in these results.  Mercury vapor and inorganic mercury are well documented to be methylated to methyl mercury in the mouth and intestines by bacteria, yeast, and other methyl donors(21,22,23).  


The saliva mercury level for those with several amalgam fillings(8 or more)  was more than 10 times the level of those without amalgam fillings.  10 %  of those with amalgam fillings had unstimulated mercury saliva levels  of  over 100 ug/L. Mercury level was proportional to the number of fillings(12,11). Three studies that looked at a population with more  than 12 fillings found generally higher levels than this study, with average  mercury level in unstimulated saliva of 29 ug/L [33 ug/d](13), 32.7 ug/L

[37 ug/d] (14), and 75 ug/day(15).  The saliva and feces of children with amalgams have  approximately 10 times the level of mercury as children without (10,16,17,FS 8), 

 and much higher levels in saliva after chewing.


Mercury levels in saliva and feces usually decline after amalgam   replacement between 80 to 95% (10,11,18-20,FS 8).  The studies  document that amalgam is the number one source of both inorganic and organic mercury in most people. It has been documented that inorganic mercury is methylated to methyl mercury in the mouth and intestines by bacteria, yeast, and other methyl donors(21,22.23).


Because of the extreme toxicity of mercury, the U.S. EPA drinking water standard for mercury is 2 parts per billion, which allows for not over 4 micrograms per day mercury exposure for an average adult.   The U.S.EPA mercury health guideline for elemental mercury exposure(vapor) is 0.3 micrograms per cubic meter of air(0.3 ug/M3).  For the average adult breathing 20 M3 of air per day, this amounts to an exposure of 6 micrograms(ug) per day.       The U.S. Department of Health, Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ASTDR) standard (MRL) -for acute inhalation exposure to mercury vapor is 0.2 micrograms Hg/M3, which translates to approx. 4 ug/day for the average adult(FS 1).


The main reasons for the high exposure levels from mercury are the high volatility of mercury(which is vaporizing constantly at room temperature) and the galvanic currents in the mouth generated by mixed metals in an electrolyte(saliva)

(FS 7).     Metal crowns are usually placed over amalgam base which gives even more galvanic currents and mercury exposure than amalgam fillings. This is warned against by the largest amalgam manufacturer and many Government health agencies, along with other common practices regarding amalgam commonly ignored by dentists in the U.S. (FS 8) Several states now require warnings to patients by dentists about the toxicity of mercury(FS 10).


Studies that the Government Health Standards were based on have found adverse health effects at very low levels(FS 8,24,25) and developmental effects on infants and children at very low levels of exposure(FS 2, FS 5,25), along with finding that mercury vapor from a mother’s fillings is readily transferred through the mother’s blood across the placenta to a fetus and also through mother’s milk(FS 2,FS 8,24) and commonly causes developmental effects(FS 2,25). 


All sewer plants in the U.S. and sewer sludge have been found to have high levels of mercury by Gov’t agencies, with mercury excretion into home and business sewers by those with amalgam fillings the most common factor along with high levels from dental office sewers(FS 9).  Government agencies have documented that this is a major factor in mercury in rivers, lakes, fish, as well as crops and rain since soil bacteria methylate the mercury from sludge used for land spreading or in landfills to methyl mercury, which is emitted at high levels.  


DAMS is currently working with thousands of people in the U.S. dealing with serious health effects caused by exposure to mercury from amalgam and urges everyone to find out more about this major problem and to get involved in resolving these health safety issues.  DAMS can provide information and help to anyone who is interested or who thinks they might have health problems related to their amalgam fillings.  ( )         




(10) Doctors Data Inc.; Fecal Elements Test; P.O.Box 111, West  Chicago, Illinois, 60186-0111; ; & Biospectron Lab, LMI, Lennart Mansson International AB,;

(11) Leistevuo J et al, Dental amalgam fillings and the amount of organic mercury in human saliva.  Caries Res 2001 May-Jun;35(3):163-6;&  Leistevuo J et al., Dental amalgam fillings and the amount of organic mercury in human saliva, Corks Res, 35(3):163-6 (2001 May-Jun) & Sellars WA, Sellars R.  Univ. Of Texas Southwestern Medical School “Methyl mercury in dental amalgams in the       human mouth”, Journal of Nutritional & Environmental Medicine 1996; 6(1): 33-37

(12) Dr. P.Kraub & M.Deyhle, Universitat Tubingen- Institut fur Organische Chemie, "Field Study on the Mercury Content of Saliva",  1997;

          (20,000 people tested for mercury level in saliva and health status/symptoms compiled) 

(13) M.J.Vimy,F.L.Lorscheider,”Intra oral Mercury released from dental amalgams  and estimation of daily dose” J. Dent Res., 1985,64(8):1069-1075;

(14) A.Gebhardt, Ermittlung der Quecksilberbelastung aus Amalgamfullurngen,  Labormedizin 16,384-386,1992; 

(15) B.Arnold, Eigenschaften und Einsatzgebiete des Chelatbildners:DMPS”, Z.Umweltmedizin 1997,5(1):38- ;   & Diagnostik un Monitorung vonSchwermetallbelastungen,I,II, ZWR,1996, 105(10): 586-569 & (11):665-; & Therapie der Schwermetallbelastung, Mineraloscope, 1996,(1):22-23.

(16) C.Malmstrom, M.Hansson, M. Nylander, Conference on Trace  Elements in Health and Disease. Stockholm May 25,1992, "Silver amalgam: an unstable material", Swedish paper translated in

& C.Malmstrom, "Amalgam derived mercury in feces", Journal of Trace Elements in Experimental Medicine, 5, (Abs 122), 1992;  

 (17) B.Engin-Deniz et al,"Die queckssilberkonzentration im spichel zehnjariger kinder in korrelation zur anzahl und Grobe iher amalgamfullungen", Zeitschrift fur Stomatologie,1992, 89:471-179; 

(18) L.Bjorkman et al, "Mercury in Saliva and Feces after Removal of 

Amalgam Fillings", Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology, 1997, 144(1), 

p156-62; & (b) J Dent Res 75: 38-, IADR Abstract 165, 1996. 

(19)G. Sandborgh-Englund,   Pharmakinetics of mercury from dental  amalgam”, Medical School Dissertation   Dept. Of Basal Oral Sciences, Karolinska Institute, (Stockholm),1998,1-49; &       G. Sandborgh-Englund et al,  Mercury in biological fluids after amalgam removal. J Dental Res, 1998, 77(4): 615-24;

(20) A. Engqvist et al, "Speciation of mercury excreted in feces from individuals with amalgam fillings", Arch Environ Health, 1998, 53(3):205-13; & Dept. of Toxicology & Chemistry, Stockholm Univ.,National Institute for Working Life, 1998 ( 

(21)    Heintze et al,“Methylation of Mercury from dental amalgam and  mercuric chloride  by oral  Streptococci”.,Scan. J. Dent. Res. 1983, 91:150-152; & L.I.Liang et al, "Mercury reactions in the human mouth with dental amalgams" Water, Air, and Soil pollution, 80:103-107; & Wang J, Liu Z; [.In vitro Study of Strepcoccus Mutans in the Plaque on the Surface of Amalgam Fillings on the Convertion of Inorganic Mercury to Organic Mercury][Article in Chinese], Shanghai Kou Qiang Yi Xue. 2000 Jun;9(2):70-2. 

(22)S Yannai, I Berdicevsky, and L Duek, Transformations of inorganic mercury by Candida albicans and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Appl Environ Microbiol. 1991 January; 57 (1): 245––247; & Choi SC, Bartha R.. Cobalamin-mediated mercury methylation by Desulfovibrio desulfuricans LS.   Appl Environ Microbiol. 1993 Jan;59(1):290-5; & Pan-Hou HS, Imura N.   Involvement of mercury methylation in microbial mercury detoxication.     Arch Microbiol. 1982 Mar;131(2):176-7; & Zorn NE, Smith JT.  A relationship between vitamin B12, folic acid, ascorbic acid, and mercury uptake and methylation.      Life Sci. 1990;47(2):167-73. 

(23) Ludwicki JK., Studies on the role of gastrointestinal tract contents in the methylation of inorganic mercury compounds.   Bull Environ Contam Toxicol. 1989 Feb;42(2):283-8; &  Rowland I, Davies M, Grasso P.  Biosynthesis of methylmercury compounds by the intestinal flora of the rat.    Arch Environ Health. 1977 Jan-Feb;32(1):24-8; & Rowland IR, Grasso P, Davies MJ.  The methylation of mercuric chloride by human intestinal bacteria. Experientia. 1975 SEP 15;31(9):1064-5. 

(24) Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, U.S. Public Health   Service, Toxicological  Profile for Mercury , 1999; & ATSDR/EPA Priority List for 1999: Top 20 Hazardous Substances, Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: & World Health Organization(WHO),1991, Environmental Health Criteria 118,  Inorganic  Mercury, WHO, Geneva.

(25) U.S. CDC, National Center for Environmental Health, National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals, 2001,

 &    National Research Council, Toxicological Effects of Methyl mercury (2000), pp. 304‑332: Risk Characterization and Public Health Implications, Nat'l Academy Press 2000.    


Available fact sheets on website with over 2500 medical study references include:


FS1. Common Mercury Exposure  Levels  from  Amalgam  Fillings High and  Government  Health  Standards Commonly Exceeded,   

FS2. Transfer  of  Mercury  from  Mother’s  Amalgams  and  Breast  Milk  to  the  Fetus  and  Developmental  Effects of Mercury on Infants,

FS3. Documentation of recovery from 60,000 clinical cases of serious adverse health effects after replacement of amalgam fillings in over 30 chronic health conditions,        

FS4. Adverse Oral Health Problems related to Amalgam Fillings,

FS5. Effect of Mercury and Other Toxic Metal Exposure on Cognitive and Behavioral Problems of Children- including ADD, dyslexia, juvenile delinquency, and crime,


FS6, Autoimmune conditions: CFS, FM, MS, Parkinson’s, ALS, Alzheimer’s, Lupus, Chron’s, Schleraderma: the connection to mercury immune reactivity and amalgam

FS7. The battery in your mouth: oral galvanic currents and metals in the mouth, and interactions with EMF ,

FS8. Health Effects of amalgam fillings and results of replacement of amalgam filings. Over 2000 medical study references (most in Medline) documenting common high mercury exposures from amalgam, and that vapor from  amalgam is the most dangerous form of mercury to the fetus, and approx. 60,000 clinical cases of amalgam replacement followed by doctors;   


FS9.  The environmental effects of amalgam affect everyone.  High levels of mercury in sewer plants, sewer sludge, crops, rain, rivers, lakes, fish due to mercury excreted by those with amalgam.

FS10. State laws requiring warnings about adverse health effects of mercury by dentists or  placing restrictions on amalgam use


National contact person:             Bernard Windham       850-878-9024

Local Contact Person: