Navigation Links
Fish Oil Supplements Don't Help Depressed Heart Patients
Date:10/20/2009

Those who took them with antidepressant fared same as those who didn't

TUESDAY, Oct. 20 (HealthDay News) -- In a surprise and not very welcome finding, researchers report that fish oil supplements do not ease depression in individuals who suffer from both depression and coronary heart disease.

Participants in the study, which is published in the Oct. 21 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, were also taking the antidepressant sertraline (Zoloft). Some studies have suggested that the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish might enhance the effects of Zoloft.

"Unfortunately, it's not where we wanted to be. We were kind of disappointed, to say the least," said study author Robert M. Carney, a professor of psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

The findings leave physicians still facing the problem of how to boost depression recovery rates so as to also lower cardiovascular risk. The question is a pressing one, given that depression can double or even triple the risk of dying in heart patients, Carney said.

"We're not just treating depression, we're treating a risk factor," he said.

Fish oil, or omega-3 fatty acid, supplements have been touted as a potential panacea for a variety of ailments, notably heart disease, but they have been losing their luster as of late.

A study published earlier this year found that patients receiving optimal drug therapy after experiencing a heart attack do not gain any additional benefit from taking supplemental omega-3 fatty acids. There was no difference in rates of heart attack, stroke, sudden cardiac death or death from any cause, regardless of whether they were taking the supplements or not.

That finding contradicted previous studies, which suggested that taking omega-3 fatty acids improved long-term survival.

Studies involving omega-3 fatty acids and depression have shown similarly uneven results.

For this study, 122 patients with major depression and coronary heart disease took 50 milligrams of Zoloft a day, then were randomized to receive either 2 grams a day of omega-3 acid ethyl esters or a corn-oil placebo capsule.

There was no difference in depression scores before and after 10 weeks of treatment, the researchers found.

The study authors noted that tweaking any of the variables in the study -- amount of Zoloft, dose of fish oil, form of fish oil or duration of treatment -- might yield more positive results.

In general, the effects of antidepressants in people with both depression and heart problems are the same as in a normal "healthy" population, Carney said.

"The problem, from our point of view, is that that's just not good enough," he added. "It's definitely better than placebo, better than doing nothing. We're trying to find a treatment or combination of treatments that's going to significantly improve the depression outcome."

Had this study turned out more positively, the next step would have been to see if improvements in depression translate into improvements in heart outcomes.

As it is, scientists are back to the drawing board.

"We're still exploring other possibilities," Carney said.

That includes an increased dose of omega-3, lengthening the study and identifying a subset of patients for whom this protocol might be more effective than antidepressants alone.

But it's not time to stop taking fish oil capsules yet, one expert said.

"The American Heart Association still does have recommendations based on the data we do have," said Dr. John Erwin III, professor of internal medicine at Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine, and senior staff cardiologist with Scott & White Hospital in Temple.

"We also use fish oil to reduce triglyceride levels and it's very effective in that use. I wouldn't encourage people who are taking fish oil caplets to stop it now because of this study. It just means we have a little bit more work to do on the depression side of things," he said.

Some of the study authors, including Carney, declared financial ties with different pharmaceutical companies including Pfizer Inc., which makes Zoloft. The study was funded by the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. GlaxoSmithKline Inc. provided both omega-3 and placebo capsules, while Pfizer supplied the Zoloft.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more on omega-3 fatty acids.



SOURCES: Robert M. Carney, Ph.D., professor, psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis; John Erwin III, M.D., associate professor of internal medicine, Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine, and senior staff cardiologist, Scott & White Hospital, Temple; Oct. 21, 2009, Journal of the American Medical Association


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Chews-4-Health Dietary Supplements to be Featured on 'Beauty Spaces'
2. Valensa to Market Neptune Krill Oil NKO(R) Formulations for Joint Health and Eye Health Dietary Supplements
3. Jerome Bettis Endorses Chews-4-Health Dietary Supplements
4. Swanson Health Products' Vitamin E and Acai Dietary Supplements Pass Quality Control Tests Conducted by ConsumerLab.com
5. Astronauts Test Use of Nutritional Supplements in Space
6. August 2009 Mayo Clinic Health Letter Highlights Herbal Supplements, Groin Rashes and Hand Arthritis
7. Women's Health Expert Dr. Susan Lark Featured on Searchvitaminsupplements.com
8. Dr. David Williams Featured on Searchvitaminsupplements.com
9. National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention Encourages Americans to Obtain Vitamin D Through Diet and Supplements
10. Board-Certified Cardiologist Dr. Stephen Sinatra Featured on Searchvitaminsupplements.com
11. Jillian Michaels, Americas Toughest Trainer, Announces New Line of Weight-Loss Supplements
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/6/2016)... ... ... From May 4 to 6, EarQ and Signia co-sponsored a ... more about Signia’s technology and the successful business and marketing techniques that make EarQ ... practices succeed in this highly competitive industry,” said Ed Keller, president of EarQ. “This ...
(Date:5/6/2016)... Diego, CA (PRWEB) , ... May 06, 2016 , ... ... Companies, has been family-owned and operated for over 35 years. Maintaining core values of ... has driven their success and made them a leading name in San Diego plumbing, ...
(Date:5/6/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 06, 2016 , ... ... System and David Konur, CEO of Cardiovascular Institute of the South announced today ... be performing a live case of an Intravascular Ultrasound Guided Coronary Atherectomy. ...
(Date:5/5/2016)... ... May 05, 2016 , ... Pivot Point Consulting ... gold standard KLAS Performance Report, Epic Consulting 2016 - Which Firms ... specialize in consulting services for electronic health record (EHR) solutions from Epic ...
(Date:5/5/2016)... Tampa, FL (PRWEB) , ... May 05, 2016 ... ... hospital in Tampa to offer patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation (A-Fib) an alternative ... (LAAC) Implant. Since first offering the procedure in April of 2015, Florida Hospital ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/4/2016)... 4, 2016 Research ... "Global Acute Myeloid Leukemia Market and Competitive ... offering.       (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160330/349511LOGO ... Market and Competitive Landscape Highlights 2016, provides ... products, Acute Myeloid Leukemia epidemiology, Acute Myeloid ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... Global Insulin Needles Industry ... key companies and supported with 272 tables and ... on the current state of the Insulin Needles ... including definitions, classifications, applications and industry chain structure. ... the international market including development history, competitive landscape ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... May 3, 2016  Axiogenesis has acquired a major investment from Sino-German High-Tech Fund to further expand product development, ... - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160503/362921 ... ... ... ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: