Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Omega-3s and psychosis

Early intervention has been found to lead to much better results for people with schizophrenia and psychosis. This often takes the form of antipsychotic drugs but they have serious side effects and their use is controversial in people who have yet to develop full-blown psychosis. A team of researchers led by Dr G. Paul Amminger from the University of Vienna studied the use of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in 81 people at 'ultra-high risk' of psychotic disorder. Half got the omega-3 and half got a placebo. By the end of the study only 4.9% of the people in the omega-3 group had developed psychosis compared to 27.5% in the placebo group. The omega-3s also significantly reduced symptoms and improved functioning with no more side effects than the placebo.

Amminger, G. Paul ... [et al] - Long-chain omega-3 fatty acids for indicated prevention of psychotic disorders: a randomized controlled trial Archives of General Psychiatry February 2010, 67(2), 146-154

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