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Does Mercury Leave the Body?



Mercury DOES leave the body.

Duration of Mercury in the Body

How long the mercury remains in your body is relative to the source of the mercury and the amount of time you were exposed to this metal. Other factors influencing the retention of mercury are personal routines that increase contact and exposure to other chemicals. It takes approximately 2 months to remove half the mercury from an initial contact and around 12 months to eradicate it completely, through the elimination process, urine and feces. The seriousness of the exposure is dependent on your age, the type of contact, general health and diet.  [“Mercury: Your Health and the Environment” Health Canada]


Fetuses are particularly vulnerable to mercury’s toxicity. Methylmercury is a form of mercury that is easily absorbed into the body by means of the gastrointestinal system. Methylmercury can move from a mother’s body into her fetus, where it will reside in the developing child’s tissues and brain. A mother’s milk can become contaminated with mercury and passed on to a nursing baby. Methylmercury changes in your body, becoming organic mercury. When this process happens in the brain, the mercury can take up to several months to leave your body. This type of mercury is found in salt water, fresh water, fish, sea life and aquatic mammals. Eating fish and seafood is the primary form of contact. [“Public Health Statement: Mercury.” ATSDR]

Chelation Therapy

There is a medical treatment that accelerates the removal of mercury from your body. This treatment is called Chelation Therapy. The doctor gives you ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid or EDTA. This substance bonds with metals in your blood stream and removes them from your body. This treatment has proven effective in removing traces of lead and excess amounts of iron. [“Chelation Therapy.” American Cancer Society]



“Page 7 – Mercury: Your Health and the Environment: A Resource Tool.” Welcome to the Health Canada Web site | Bienvenue au site Web de Santé Canada. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Jan. 2013.

“ATSDR – Public Health Statement: Mercury.” ATSDR Home. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Jan. 2013.

“Long-term mercury excretion in… [Int Arch Occup Environ Health. 1994] – PubMed – NCBI.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Jan. 2013.

“Chelation Therapy.” American Cancer Society | Information and Resources for Cancer: Breast, Colon, Lung, Prostate, Skin. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Jan. 2013.

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