Different formulations of amalgam have physical properties that may make them behave differently in the often-contaminated root end environment. Five different brands of amalgam were evaluated for microleakage of root-end fillings placed in extracted human teeth. Theses included a zinc-free spherical amalgam, a zinc-free admixture amalgam, two zinc-containing admixture amalgams, and a zinc-containing lathe-cut amalgam. The amalgams were placed either into dry root-end preparations or into preparations contaminated with human blood. The fluid filtration method was used to measure microleakage at 1, 2, 4, 8, 12, and 24 wk after placement. Analysis of variance revealed significant differences in the rates of microleakage at every measurement period. Scheffé's test showed that the zinc-free spherical amalgam had significantly greater leakage than all the other products evaluated. There were no significant differences between any of the other products. Blood contamination did not adversely affect the seal of any amalgam.
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