Mercury concentration in maternal serum, cord blood, and placenta in patients with amalgam dental fillings: effects on fetal biometric measurements

J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2016 Nov;29(22):3665-9. doi: 10.3109/14767058.2016.1140737. Epub 2016 Feb 22.


Aim: We aimed to determine the extent to which mercury is transmitted from the mother to fetus via the umbilical cord in patients with amalgam dental fillings, and its effect on fetal biometric measurements.

Methods: Twenty-eight patients as the study group with amalgam fillings, and 32 of them as the control group were included in this prospective case-control study. The mercury levels were measured in the maternal and cord venous sera, and the placental samples. Two groups were compared in terms of these and the fetal/neonatal biometric measurements.

Results: In the study group, the maternal and umbilical cord mercury levels were found to be significantly higher than those from the control group (p = 0.006 and p = 0.010, respectively). These high levels did not affect the fetal biometric measurements.

Conclusions: The presence of high serum mercury levels in pregnant women with amalgam fillings is important, and warrants further long-term studies in order to investigate the fetal neurological effects as well.

Keywords: Dental amalgam; maternal–fetal exchange; mercury; pregnancy outcome.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Body Height / drug effects
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cephalometry
  • Dental Amalgam / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Fetal Blood / chemistry*
  • Fetal Weight / drug effects
  • Head / embryology
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Maternal Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Maternal-Fetal Exchange*
  • Mercury / adverse effects*
  • Mercury / analysis
  • Mercury / blood
  • Placenta / chemistry*
  • Pregnancy / blood*
  • Prospective Studies


  • Dental Amalgam
  • Mercury