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Adam T. Gerstenblith, Darrell E. Baskin, Chirag P. Shah, Jeremy D. Wolfe, Richard S. Kaiser, Mitchell S. Fineman, Allen C. Ho; Short Term Ocular Safety Assessment Of High Dose Oral Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation for Age-Related Macular Degeneration. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(14):2936.
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To evaluate the short term ocular safety of high dose oral omega-3 fatty acid supplementation in dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
Prospective, non-randomized, non-comparative, interventional case series. Thirty-four eyes of 17 patients at least 50 years of age with early to intermediate AMD received oral supplementation with 4 grams of omega-3-fatty acids daily (840mg EPA/2,520mg DHA) for 6 months. Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study (ETDRS) best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) was measured at baseline and at each of the 1, 3, and 6 month follow up visits. Multifocal ERG (mfERG) testing was performed and serum omega-3 index was drawn at baseline and at the end of the study. Systemic and ocular adverse event data were collected at each follow up visit.
Patients were Caucasian (100%) and predominantly women (71%), with an average age of 69 years (range 56-89). Average ETDRS BCVA letter score at baseline was 77 letters (Snellen equivalent of 20/32). Serum omega-3 index increased by an average of 7.6% over the course of the study (p<.0001). There were no statistically significant changes in visual acuity or retinal function by mfERG testing over the course of this short-term study. There were no reported systemic or ocular adverse events.
Visual acuity in patients with dry AMD taking daily oral supplementation with 4 grams of omega-3 fatty acids did not significantly change over 6 months. Additionally, there was no significant change in retinal function as assessed by mfERG. These results argue against any retinal or other ocular toxicity of high-dose oral omega-3 supplementation. Additionally, dietary supplementation can increase serum omega-3 index in patients with dry AMD.
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