Furor over fillings

May 13, 2008 3:15:04 PM PDT
Long-running controversy playing out on 2 fronts in Philadelphia. Opponents protest on streets, as work on patient information brochure begins.

The controversy over mercury in dental fillings is brewing again in Philadelphia.

Members of 'Consumers for Dental Choice' protested today outside medical offices in Center City.

They want to ban mercury in fillings, saying it's unsafe.

The group also wants more health insurers to pay for white composite fillings.

Sean Connolly, of the Pennsylvania Dental Association says there's no proof of any risk from mercury in fillings.

He told Action News, "We know that every major health organization has studied these, and has determined that amalgam fillings are safe, effective, and durable."

The dental association says the mercury in fillings isn't the same type causing concern in the environment, and in fish.

In Philadelphia, a new city ordinance calls for all patients to get a written information on the pros and cons of all filling types. Work is just beginning on that brochure, a joint effort of the Philadelphia Dept. of Public Health, the Pennsylvania Dental Association, and the New Era Dentistry