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The local effect of the absorption of toxic material from pyorrhœa pockets on the hard and soft tissues around the teeth is well known. In this experiment an attempt was made to study the toxic effect on remote structures by injecting the sterile filtrate fresh from pyorrhœa pockets into various animals.
The filtrate was obtained from patients with chronic pyorrhœa by removing the contents from parodontal pockets and passing them through a Seitz filter. The sterile filtrate obtained was then injected into cats, guinea-pigs, rabbits, and rats, in varying amounts.
In the group of four cats, all showed fatty degeneration of the liver and two showed extreme fatty degeneration of the kidney tubules.
Five guinea-pigs receiving one injection of ½ c.c. of filtrate showed no pathological change in the liver or kidney. One out of three guinea-pigs receiving two injections of filtrate showed fatty degeneration of the liver, while five out of six pigs receiving one injection of 1 c.c.,—i.e. double the quantity—showed definite fatty degeneration of the liver. One out of two rabbits showed similar changes and of six rats injected, all died in from five to seven days.
The experiment suggests that substances are elaborated in parodontal pockets which are highly toxic and tend to injure the liver and kidney of animals in the process of their elimination. Such toxic material proved fatal in fifteen of the twenty-five animals injected.