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October 1967

Fluoride and Calcium Content of Bone in Otosclerotic Patients

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Otolaryngology and the Tissue Culture Laboratory, Northwestern University Medical School and Wesley Memorial Hospital, Chicago.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1967;86(4):412-418. doi:10.1001/archotol.1967.00760050414011

FLUORINE is a ubiquitous element found in trace amounts in all foods and drinking water in all parts of the world in the soluble form of its sodium salt. Fluoride is readily absorbed from the intestinal tract and is excreted in the urine. It passes briefly via the vascular system through all soft tissues of the body, practically none being retained in these tissues. The case of teeth and bone is quite different: It is generally accepted that fluoride forms a chemical compound with the hydroxyapatite crystals of bone, the fluoride ion replacing the hydroxyl ion. The resulting fluoroapatite is less soluble than the hydroxyapatite that it replaces. The rate of deposition of fluoride in teeth and bone is proportionate to the fluoride intake from food, inhalation, medication, and especially from drinking water.

Theoretical reasons have been proposed1 for hoping that large doses of sodium fluoride might favor recalcification

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