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Fish oil may promote arrhythmia.

Fish oil supplements not only failed to suppress arrhythmias, they may have promoted them in a study of patients with implantable defibrillators, reported Merritt H. Raitt, M.D., of Oregon Health and Science University, Portland, and associates.

Many studies have suggested that fish oil supplements or increased intake of certain fatty fish exerts an antiarrhythmic effect, leading both the American Heart Association and the Food and Drug Administration to recommend fish oil for patients with coronary artery disease and for the general population.

To assess the possible antiarrhythmic properties of fish oil, the investigators conducted a multicenter study of 200 patients who received implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICDs) for sustained ventricular tachycardia (VT) or ventricular fibrillation (VF). Subjects were randomly assigned to receive either fish oil supplements or placebo and were followed for a median of 2 years. There was a significantly increased rate of recurrent episodes of VT/VF in patients assigned to fish oil. "Fish oil may be proarrhythmic in this population," the investigators concluded (JAMA 2005;293:2884-91).
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Author:Moon, Mary Ann
Publication:Internal Medicine News
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jul 15, 2005
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