Netflix dumps controversial doco

A CONTROVERSIAL Netflix documentary that's caused a serious stir in the medical community has been quietly removed from the streaming service.

Root Cause, which claims root canals can be linked to cancer, has disappeared from its website where it had been since January 1.

The film's claims sparked many to question the safety and appropriateness of root canals and whether they could cause cancer, with the medical community forced to address the issues to put the public at ease.

The America Association of Endodontists created an 'Internet Movie Talking Points' document that said the doctors and experts quoted were "extremists and outliers" in the broader medical community.

"Many have questionable reputation and/or license revocations," it said.

"The theory questioning the safety of root canal treatment is nearly 100 years old and has long and continuously been debunked.

"The broader medical and scientific community support root canal treatments as a safe and effective way to eliminate pain and save a patient's natural teeth."

Dr Mitchell Josephs labelled it a "horrific, misleading 'film' and said he was "angrier than a Chihuahua with an anal gland problem, dragging his butt across the carpet".

"This is completely erroneous and just scares humanity for no reason other than to get attention; the equivalent of yelling fire in a crowded movie theatre," he wrote in the Herald Tribute.

The movie makes claims such as "the vast majority of chronic degenerative diseases begin with problems in the mouth" and "98 per cent of women who have breast cancer had a root canal tooth on the same side as their breast cancer".

But the association said there was no valid, scientific evidence linking root canal

treatment to disease elsewhere in the body and the claims were completely false and misleading.

An editorial review Amazon, one of the few sites still carrying the doco, describes the film as one man's extraordinary 10-year true story journey to find the root cause of his panic attacks, anxiety, chronic fatigue, nausea, dizziness, agitation and insomnia.

"It is an incredibly personal journey of a round-the-world search for answers that is one moment tear jerking, and laugh out loud funny the next," it says.

"Root Cause is set to change the way the world looks at holistic health."

Medical experts have praised Netflix's decision to remove film, directed by Australian Frazer Bailey, despite the website itself not making a statement on its reasons.

Dental associations had written to Netflix, Apple, Amazon and Vimeo in January asking them to remove the film from their platforms, saying it could harm the public's view of safe treatments.

"When you undergo a root canal or other endodontic treatment, the inflamed or infected pulp is removed and the inside of the tooth is carefully cleaned and disinfected, then filled and sealed," the endodontist association clarified to the public.

"Root canal treatments eliminate bacteria and infection while allowing patients to keep their natural teeth."

Media experts suspect Netflix pulled the film to protects its own reputation for making documentaries.