Today on ABC Morning News, Denture Adhesive (Fixodent) was brought to our attention AGAIN, as being dangerous if used inappropriately. Please read the ADA press release regarding this issue if you have any concerns on using Fixodent.
American Dental Association Statement on Zinc in Denture Cream
CHICAGO, Feb. 19, 2010—Millions of people use denture cream (also known as denture adhesive). Some, but not all, denture creams contain zinc. A few recent case reports in the scientific literature indicate a possible association between excessive use of zinc-containing denture creams and neurological and hematological problems.
In each situation, the patients had ill-fitting dentures and reported using excessive amounts of denture cream with zinc for years. Several people reported using two or more tubes of denture cream per week for years, when one tube would normally last for 3-10 weeks, when used as directed.
The authors theorize that the patients probably swallowed excess denture cream, and that over years of use, zinc may have built up in these individual’s bodies. It is well documented that swallowing excessive amounts of zinc can raise blood levels of zinc which can lead to lower blood levels of copper. The lower blood level of copper can then lead to neurological and hematological problems.
More information is needed to determine if there is a cause and effect relationship. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has not issued an advisory or recall of zinc-containing denture creams at this time. As of Feb. 19, 2010, Glaxo Smith Kline, a major manufacturer of denture cream, voluntarily decided, as a precautionary measure, to stop using zinc in the following denture cream brands: Super Poligrip Original, Super Poligrip Ultra Fresh and Super Poligrip Extra Care.
The ADA advises denture wearers to see their dentist if their dentures do not fit well or if they have questions about the use of dental cream. Dental examinations and appropriate care can reduce the need for denture adhesive products.
Regular dental checkups are important for everyone, including denture wearers. The ADA's Council on Scientific Affairs will continue to monitor this issue on behalf of our member dentists and the patients they serve.