VI. Results of Removal of Amalgam Fillings (B. Windham, Editor), 2009
1. For the week following amalgam removal, body mercury levels increase significantly, depending on protective measures taken, but within 2 weeks levels fall significantly. (82,89) Chronic conditions can worsen temporarily, but usually improve if adequate precautions are taken to reduce exposure during removal.
2. Removal of amalgam fillings resulted in a significant reduction in body burden and body waste product load of mercury (75,82,88,89,93,95,115,303). Total reduction in mercury levels in blood and urine is often over 80% within a few months(79,82,89,93,115,57). On average those with 29 amalgam surfaces excreted over 3 times more mercury in urine after DMPS challenge than those with algam surfaces, and those with 45 amalgam surfaces more than 6 times as much mercury(12b).
3. For the following case studies of amalgam replacement, some clinics primarily replaced amalgam fillings using patient protective measures and supportive supplements, whereas some clinics do something comparable to Hal Huggins total dental revision where in addition to amalgam replacement, patients gold or nickel crowns over amalgam are replaced by biocompatible alternatives, root canals extracted and cavitations checked for and cleaned. There are extensive documented cases (many thousands)where removal of amalgam fillings led to cure or significant improvement of serious health problems such as:
periodontal diseases (tissue inflammation, metal mouth, mouth sores, bone loss, burning mouth, etc.) (8,14,25,35,40,46,57,60,62,75,78,82,94,95,100,115,133,192bcf,212abc,222,233abcdefgh,271,303,313,317,321,322,341,376,525,532,538,551,552,583), oral lichen planus/ leukaplakia (56,86,87,90,101,168, 313a) (oral keratosis (pre cancer)(87,251), immune system/ autoimmune problems (8,14,35,60,62,222,270,271,303,313,323,322,342,91,212,229,291,452,470,485,523,532,552,581,582), epilepsy (5,35,309,229,386e,557), multiple chemical sensitivities (14,26,35,60,62,95,222,229,232,233,115,303,313,321,342,440,
537,583), allergies (8,14,26,35,40,46,62,94,95,97,165,212,222,228,229,233,271,303,317,322,349,376,440,469, 525c,532,557,581,582,583), asthma (8,14,75,97,222,228,271,322,552,556,557), chronic headaches/migraines (5,8,14,25,34,3547f,57,62,95, 185,212abc,222,229, 233abdefgh,271,317,322,349,354,115,376,440,453, 523,525,532,537,538,552,556,582,583), concentration/ADD (14,25,95,233bc,etc.) tachycardia and heart problems (8,14,25,35,59,94,115,205,212,222 , 232,233bcdg, 271,306, 310,322,525c,554,556,557), blood conditions (8,212,222,232,233,271,322,523,551,35,95), Crohn’s disease (14,60,222,229,469,485,594), stomach (gastrointestinal) problems (8,14,35,57,62,95,212abc,222,228,229,233bcdg,271,303,317,322,440,469,525c, 532,552) ,SLE/ lupus (12,35,60,113,222,233,323,537), dizzyness/vertigo (8,14,40,95,212abc,222,229,233bcdgh,271,322,321,376,453,525c,551,552), joint pain/arthritis (8,14,35,62,95,103,212abc,222,229,233abcg,271,303,313, 322,358,386de,469,523,525c,538,551,552, 556,557,582,583), neuropathy/paresthesia (8,14,35,62,94,163,212,222,303,322,404,556,557), MS(14,25,62,94,95,102,163,170,212,222,229,237,271,291,302,303,322,369,469,485,34,35,229,523,532), ALS(97,246,423,405,469,470,485,535,35), Alzheimer’s(62,204,251c,303,386e,535,35), Parkinson’s/ muscle tremor (14,222,248,228a,229,233f, 271,322, 469,535,557,212,62,94,98,35), Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) (8,14,35,47f,57,60,62,88,185,212abc,293,229,222,232,236, 237,233abcdfgh, 271,303,313,317,321,322,323,342,346,369, 375,376,386de,440, 469,470,523,532,537,538,551,552, 556,557,558,582), memory disorders (8,14,25,35,57,94,212,222,303,322,440,453,552,557), muscular/jointpain/Fibromyalgia (5,8,25,35,60,62,185,222,233bcfg,237,293,303,317,321,322,346,369,440,469,470,523,527,532,538,552,556,582,94), infertility(9,35,38,229,303,367), endometriosis(229,35,38,9), autism & Asperger’s Syndrome (558,601,602,603) schizophrenia (294,34,35,601), depression(25,57,62,94,107,163,185,212,222,229,233bcfh,237,271,294,285e,303,317,321,322,376,386de, 404,453,465,485,523,525c,532,538,551,552,556,557,583,35, 40), insomnia (35,62,94,212,222,233ag,271,303,317,321,322,376,440,525c,582,583), nausea(525c),anger(212,233,102,321,557,35,62), anxiety & mental confusion (25,62,94,212,222,229,233abcfgh,271,303,317,321,322,440,453,525c, 532,551, 557,583, 35,57), susceptibility to infections (35,40,62,222,233cd,251,303,317,322,349,350,469,470,532), antibiotic resistant infection(251,303), cancer(breast,etc./leukemia) (35,38,94,180,228a,303,469,486,530), alopecia/hair loss (40,187,271,317,322,349,583), sinus problems (35,40,47f,94,222,271,322,532,583), ringing ears/tinnitus (8,14,35,57,62,94,222,233bcdg,271,303,322,349,376,525c), chronic eye conditions: inflamation/ iritis/ astigmatism/myopia /cataracts/macula degeneration/retinitis pigmentosa, color vision loss,etc. (14,35,222,233abcg,271,303,322,440,529), vision disturbances (8,14,35,62,212,233abcg,271,303,322,525c), eczema and psoriasis (62,168b,212b,233c,322,323,385, 375, 408, 459,525c,557), hypothyroid & autoimmune thyroiditis (303,369,382,91), skin conditions (8,62,212,222,233bc,322,525c,583), urinary/prostrate problems(212,222), hearing loss(102,322,35), Candida(26,35,303,404,537,etc.), PMS(35,6,322,etc.), diabetes(35,369,598,etc.), HIV/AIDs, (485b,35), etc.
The above over 60,000 cases of cure or significant improvements were not isolated cases of cures; the clinical studies indicated a large majority of most such type cases treated showed significant improvement. Chronic health effects are the result of additive and synergistic effects of all toxic substances one is exposed to along with synergistic effects with other pathogens, and synergistic effects of toxic metals and other toxics are often much more significant than individual effects Details are available and case histories. For example, one of the clinics(95) replacing amalgams in a large number of patients with chronic conditions had full recovery or significant improvement:
in over 90% of cases for: metallic taste, tender teeth, bad breath, and mouth sores;
in over 80% of cases for: depression, irrational fear, headaches/migraines, irritability, dizziness, insomnia, bleeding gums, throat irritation, nasal congestion or discharge, muscle tremor, and leg cramps;
in over 70% of cases for: bloating or intestinal cramps, skin reactions, sciatic pain, chest pain, poor memory, urinary disorders, fatigue, poor concentration/ADD, watery eyes;
in over 60% of cases for: allergies, constipation, muscle fatigue, cold hands/feet, heart problems.
A Jerome meter was used to measure mercury vapor level in the mouth, and the average was 54.6 micrograms mercury per cubic meter of air, far above the Government health guideline for mercury(217).
Some of the above cases used chemical or natural chelation to reduce accumulated mercury body burden in addition to amalgam replacement. Some clinics using DMPS for chelation reported over 80% with chronic health problems were cured or significantly improved(222,271,359).
Other clinics reported similar success. But the recovery
rate of those using dentists with special equipment and training in protecting
the patient reported much higher success rates than those with standard
training and equipment, 97% versus 37 to 88%(435). The Huggins
Clinical studies have found that patch testing is not a good predictor of success of amalgam removal, as a high percentage of those testing negative also recovered from chronic conditions after replacement of fillings(86,87,168,etc.).
Among those with
chronic immune system problems with related immune antibodies, the types
showing the highest level of antibody reductions after amalgam removal include glomerular basal membrane, thyroglobulin,
and microsomal thyroid antigens(91).
have developed a sophisticated test for immune/autoimmune reactions that has
proved successful in diagnosing and treating environmentally caused diseases
such as lichen planus,
Interviews of a
large population of Swedish patients that had amalgams removed due to health
problems found that virtually all reported significant health improvements and
that the health improvements were permanent(233). (study
period 17 years) A compilation of an even larger population found similar results(212,282). For
example 89% of those reporting allergies had significant improvements or total
elimination; extrapolated to
1. Feces is the major
path of excretion of mercury from the body, having a higher correlation to
systemic body burden than urine or blood, which tend to correlate with recent
exposure level (6b,21abd,35,36,79,80,183,278). For this reason many researchers
consider feces to be the most reliable indicator of daily exposure level to
mercury or other toxics. The average level of mercury in feces of populations
with amalgam fillings is as much as 1 ppm and approx.
10 times that of a similar group without fillings (79,80,83,335,386,528,25),
with significant numbers of those with several filings having over 10 ppm and 170 times those without fillings(80). For those with several
fillings daily fecal mercury excretion levels range between 20 to 200 ug/day. The
saliva test is another good test for daily mercury exposure, done commonly in
A new test approved by the FDA for diagnosing damage that has been caused by toxic metals like mercury is the fractionated porphyrin test(260,35), that measures amount of damage as well as likely source. Mercury blocks enzymes needed to convert some types of porphyrins to hemoglobin and adenosine tri phosphate(ATP). The pattern of which porphyrins are high gives an indication of likely toxic exposure, with high precoproporphyrin almost always high with mercury toxicity and often coproporphyrin.
Provocation challenge tests after use of chemical chelators such as DMPS or DMSA also are effective at measuring body burden(57,58), but high levels of DMPS can be dangerous to some people- especially those still having amalgam fillings or those allergic to sulfur drugs or sulfites. Many studies using chemical chelators such as DMPS or DMSA have found post chelation levels to be poorly correlated with prechelation blood or urine levels(57,115,303), but one study (340) found a significant correlation between pre and post chelation values when using DMPS. Challenge tests using DMPS or DMSA appear to have a better correlation with body burden and toxicity symptoms such as concentration , memory, and motor deficits(290)- with many studies finding a significant correlation between post chelation mercury level and the number of amalgam surfaces(57,172,173,222,290,292,273,303). On average those with 29 amalgam surfaces excreted over 3 times more mercury in urine after DMPS challenge than those with algam surfaces, and those with 45 amalgam surfaces more than 6 times as much mercury(12b). Several doctors use 16 ug/L as the upper bound for mercury after DMPS challenge, and consider anyone with higher levels to have excess body burden(222,352). However one study(290) found significant effects at lower levels. Some researchers believe DMSA has less adverse side effects than DMPS and prefer to use DMSA for chelation for this reason. Some studies have also found DMSA as more effective at removing mercury from the brain(58). A common protocol for DMSA(developed to avoid redistribution effects) is 50 mg orally every 4 hours for 3 days and then off 11 days.
Another chelator used for clogged arteries, EDTA, forms toxic compounds with mercury and can damage brain function(307). Use of EDTA may need to be restricted in those with high Hg levels. N-acetylcysteine(NAC) has been found to be effective at increasing cellular glutathione levels and chelating mercury(54). Experienced doctors have also found additional zinc to be useful when chelating mercury(222) as well as counteracting mercury’s oxidative damage(43). Zinc induces metallothionein which protects against oxidative damage and increases protective enzyme activities and glutathione which tend to inhibit lipid peroxidation and suppress mercury toxicity(430,464). Also lipoic acid,LA, has been found to dramatically increase excretion of inorganic mercury(over 12 fold), but to cause decreased excretion of organic mercury(572d) and copper. Lipoic acid has a protective effect regarding lead or inorganic mercury toxicity through its antioxidant properties(572), but should not be used with high copper. Lipoic acid and N-acetylcysteine(NAC) also increase glutathione levels and protect against superoxide radical/peroxynitrite damage, so thus have an additional neuroprotective effect(494a,521,524,572c,54,56). Zinc is a mercury and copper antagonist and can be used to lower copper levels and protect against mercury damage. Lipoic acid has been found to have protective effects against cerebral ischemic-reperfusion, excitotoxic amino acid(glutamate) brain injury, mitochondrial dysfunction, diabetic neuropathy(572). Other antioxidants such as carnosine(495a), Coenzyme Q10,Vitamins C & E, gingko biloba, pycnogenol and selenium have also been found protective against degenerative neurological conditions(494,495e, 444,237).
2. Tests suggested by Huggins/Levy(35) for evaluation and treatment of mercury toxicity:
(a) hair element test(386) (low hair mercury level does not indicate low body level)(more than 3 essential minerals out of normal range indicates likely metals toxicity)
© blood serum profile
(d) urinary mercury (for person with average exposure with amalgam fillings, average mercury level is 3 to 4 ppm;
lower test level than this likely means person is poor excreter and accumulating mercury, often mercury toxic(35)
(e) fractionated porphyrin(note test results sensitive to light, temperature, shaking)
(f) individual tooth electric currents(replace high negative current teeth first)
(g) patient questionnaire on exposure and symptom history
(h) specific gravity of urine(test for pituitary function, s.g>1.022 normal; s.g.< 1.008 consistent with depression and suicidal tendencies(35)}
3. Note: during initial exposure to mercury the body marshals immune system and other measures to try to deal with the challenge, so many test indicators will be high; after prolonged exposure the body and immune system inevitably lose the battle and measures to combat the challenge decrease- so some test indicator scores decline. Chronic conditions are common during this phase. Also high mercury exposures with low hair mercury or urine mercury level usually indicates body is retaining mercury and likely toxicity problem(35). In such cases where (calcium> 1100 or < 300 ppm) and low test mercury,manganese,zinc,potassium; mercury toxicity likely and hard to treat since retaining mercury.
Test results indicating mercury/metals toxicity(35):
(a) white blood cell count >7500 or < 4500
(b) hemocrit > 50% or < 40%
© lymphocyte count > 2800 or < 1800
(d) blood protein level > 7.5 gm/100 ml
(e) triglycerides > 150 mg %ml
(f) BUN > 18 or < 12
(g) hair mercury > 1.5 ppm or < .4 ppm
(h) oxyhemoglobin level < 55% saturated
(I) carboxyhemoglubin > 2.5% saturated
(j) T lymphocyte count < 2000
(m) hair aluminum > 10 ppm
(n) hair nickel > 1.5 ppm
(o) hair manganese > 0.3 ppm
(p) immune reactive to mercury, nickel, aluminum, etc.
(q) high hemoglobin and hemocrit and high alkaline phosphatase(alk phos) and lactic dehydrogenese(LDA) during initial phases of exposure; with low/marginal hemoglobin and hemocrit plus low oxyhemoglobin during long term chronic fatigue phase.
4. Huggins Total Dental Revision Protocol(35):
(a) history questionnaire and panel of tests.
(b) replace amalgam fillings starting with filling with highest negative current or highest negative quadrant, with supportive vitamin/mineral supplements.
© extract all root canaled teeth using proper finish protocol.
(d) test and treat cavitations and amalgam tattoos where relevant
(e) supportive supplementation, periodic monitoring tests, evaluate need for further treatment(not usually needed).
(f) avoid acute exposures/challenge to the immune system on a
treatment of many cases of chronic autoimmune conditions such as MS,
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