Removal of mercury contamination from the dental clinic with metal backing for X-ray film


Background: Mercury in dental clinic has been recognized as a potential health hazard. This evaluated the removal of Hg spills from different surface in dental clinic with tin in the metal backing for dental x-ray film.Materials and Methods: Hg 90 drops (each one of 0.2 g) placed on 9 different surfaces in the dental clinic, and were divided into: Group I (protective surfaces) subgroup 1 (mask) subgroup 2 (gloves) subgroup 3 (dental apron)Group II (dental instrument and equipment) subgroup 1 (metals, for example, the metal tray of sterilizer) subgroup 2 (dental chair unit) subgroup 3 (wet surfaces, for example, the vacuum suction tank of the sucker). Group III (other clinical surfaces) subgroup 1 (working bench) subgroup 2 (the floor) subgroup 3 (the carpet). The metal backing for x-ray film (0.4 g) placed on each Hg spill, and the time of adsorption was recorded in seconds using a digital timer.Results: The results showed adsorption of Hg spills to the metal backing for x-ray film in all groups except in the crevice of the carpet. Group I subgroup 2 showed the faster interaction (7.1 + 2.828 sec.) while group II subgroup 3 showed the slowest interaction (90.3 + 20.981 sec.).Conclusion: Hg spills on dental protective surfaces can be removed easily, while the most difficult spills to be removed were on the wet surface. Furthermore, Hg spills in crevis of the carpet can not be removed