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Mercury: Hidden Danger that Debilitated this Dentist


From Dr. Stuart Scheckner: "This document can be distributed.  I hope that it is enlightening."

----- Original Message -----

From: Gina_Stewart-Culebro, ReadersDigest.com
To: Stuart Scheckner
Sent: Thursday, October 02, 2003 7:40 AM
Subject: Hidden Danger

Dear Dr. Scheckner:

        Thank you for your response to "Hidden Danger in Healthy Foods" from our August issue.  We appreciate your taking the time to share your feedback and personal experience.   Your comments will certainly be shared with our editorial staff, including your suggestion regarding a follow-up article.

        We appreciate your support of our publication and hope you find much to enjoy in our upcoming issues.  

Sincerely yours,
The Editors

To:        <letters@rd.com>
From:        "Stuart Scheckner" <drscheck@comcast.net>
Date:        07/24/2003 09:13:17 PM
Subject:        Hidden Danger

Dear Alexis,
I understand you have written an article on mercury poisoning.  I unfortunately have gone through the ordeal of mercury poisoning from a 3/4 pound spill of mercury in shag carpeting in my dental office.  Mercury vaporizes from the carpeting and about 80% of the vapor is absorbed through the lungs into the blood.  Here, it almost immediately crosses the blood brain barrier.  It becomes oxidized within the brain.  At this point, it is locked in the brain and cannot go past the blood brain barrier again.  So it goes in but can't get out.  This leads to an accumulation of mercury in the brain over a period of time.  At a certain point, so much damage is done that symptoms develop mainly as neuropsychological problems.  
Mercury has two targets on our biological system.  These are primarily neurological and secondarily immunological.
My experience of going through this horrible ordeal of mercury poisoning and being a professional who could research the subject puts me in a very unique position of really understanding the insidious nature of mercury.   I had no idea what the symptoms were; neither did my physicians.  I researched thousands of pages of medical peer review literature and documented my case.   Perhaps you can help me get information out to the public so that they can understand that mercury toxicity is not a rare event.  There are many people who are suffering with no idea they are victims.
Mercury exposure comes from various environmental sources.  The most common accepted source is from fish. However, according to one of the most credible sources on mercury toxicity, Thomas Clarkson, PhD of the University of Rochester Medical School, the primary source to the human body burden is from dental amalgam commonly called a silver filling.   Dental amalgam is composed of 50% mercury and lesser amounts of silver, copper, tin, and usually zinc.  Mercury is released from dental amalgam when a person chews or drinks hot liquids.  It vaporizes going into the sinuses and is absorbed into the blood stream.  It only stays in the blood for a short amount of time and is absorbed by the brain and other organs.  The low levels from dental amalgam are hard to detect but over a period of time can accumulate in the target organs.  There is sufficient literature on this subject to confirm this.
However, there is one big problem why this is such a controversial subject.  There is no accepted definitive test for subacute mercury toxicity.  Therefore, you can have a patient with subacutre low level mercury toxicity and not have a firm clinical diagnosis.  Mercury is one of the most insidious and dangerous poisons known to man.
If you start to study the subject, you will begin to realize the true impact of what I am saying.
I lost my dental career from this horrible insidious poison.  I would like that my ordeal and agony that I experienced not be in vain. It has now been over twenty years of suffering an unbelievable nightmare.  It is only the last few years that I have some improvement.
Please help me get the word out to the public.  The information is there.  I can get it for you.  There is no safe level of exposure to mercury.  It has been eliminated from paints.  It needs to be eliminated from dental materials and as a preservative in various medications.  It has been used in childhood vaccinations and flu shots.  In childhood vaccinations, there has been a link to autism.
I have more to tell you but will wait for your response.
Sincerely yours,
Stuart Scheckner, DMD
Information for your review:
Watson-Burton bill introduced! Burton-Watson hearings begin!

1. H.B. 1680:  Our friends Congresswoman Diane Watson and Congressman Dan Burton have re-introduced the bill to ban mercury fillings at the end of 2007; it stops their use immediately for children, pregnant women, and nursing mothers; and it provides strong health warnings immediately.  It is H.B. 1680; it's a new Congress, so it's a new bill number.

"... Amalgam must be considered to be an unsuitable material for dental restoration."

Washington, D.C. - The House Government Reform Subcommittee on Human Rights and Wellness is continuing an investigation into medical and dental exposure to mercury that was initiated during the 107th Congress by Chairman Dan Burton (R-IN-5) at the full Committee on Government Reform. This hearing will focus on the potential health implications of mercury in the body, as well as the importance of fully disclosing adequate information to patients, in order to better enable them to make informed choices about the type of dental restorative material that is used in their treatment.

The Subcommittee on Human Rights and Wellness hearing, entitled "Consumer Choice and Implementing Full Disclosure in Dentistry," will be held on Thursday, May 8, 2003, in Room 2154 of the Rayburn House Office Building at 2:00 p.m.

Said Burton, "Mercury is one of the most toxic minerals found in nature, second only to radioactive materials. American consumers and parents have a right to know, in advance, the risks of placing a product containing a substantial amount of mercury in their mouths or the mouths of their children."

During his tenure as Chairman of the full Committee on Government Reform (1997-2002), Congressman Burton raised concerns about the use of the mercury-based preservative, thimerosal, in vaccines and its links to developmental, speech, and language delays. In a hearing on November 14, 2002, Chairman Burton specifically focused on the potential neurological damage from mercury-containing dental amalgams, and the particular risks to fetuses and young children.
A dental amalgam, often called a "silver filling," is made up of a mixture of powdered metals and liquid mercury. The amalgam gets its silver color from the mercury, which makes up 50 percent or more of the amalgam by weight.

An increasing body of science points to mercury-containing dental amalgams as a source of neurological problems including, but not limited to, modest declines in intelligence quotient (IQ), Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Autism, and Alzheimer's Disease (AD). A growing number of dentists in the private sector, estimated at
approximately 27 percent, now practice mercury-free dentistry, using alternative restorative materials.

A group of leading scientists and medical researchers will appear before the Subcommittee to present their latest research findings. Among them, Dr. Maths Berlin, P.h.D., Professor Emeritus of Environmental Medicine at the University of Lund in Sweden, will discuss his most recent report, entitled "Mercury in Dental Filling Materials - An Updated Risk Analysis in Environmental Medical Terms." A conclusion of that report, released just last week, states: "With reference to the fact that mercury is a multi-potent toxin with effects on several levels of the biochemical dynamics of the cell, amalgam must be considered to be an unsuitable material for dental restoration. This is especially true since fully adequate and less toxic alternatives are available."

On the legislative front, Chairman Burton and Ranking Minority Member, Diane Watson (D-CA), have introduced the "Mercury in Dental Fillings Disclosure and Prohibition Act of 2003." The Burton-Watson bill seeks to amend the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act by prohibiting the introduction of mercury that is intended for use in a dental filling into interstate commerce after 2008. In addition to the 2008 phase-out deadline, the Burton-Watson bill also establishes a deadline for all mercury-containing devices intended for use in a dental filling to bear the following label effective December 31, 2004:

"Dental amalgam contains approximately 50 percent mercury, a highly toxic element. Such product should not be administered to children less than 18 years of age, pregnant women, or lactating women. Such product should not be administered to a consumer without a warning that the product contains mercury, which is a highly toxic element, and therefore poses health risks."
(Note from Dr. Scheckner:  My son was given childhood vaccinations and had a reaction to it.  He presently has a learning language disorder.)