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Omega-3 Fatty Acids Beneficial in Dyslipidemia

Meta-analysis reveals that combining them with statins significantly improves lipid profile

FRIDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with mixed dyslipidemia, a combination of statin therapy and prescription omega-3 fatty acids may help improve lipid profiles, according to a report in the Oct. 15 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

Philip Barter, M.D., Ph.D., of the Heart Research Institute in Sydney, Australia, and a colleague conducted a meta-analysis of 37 randomized controlled trials performed between 1989 and 2003.

The researchers found that prescription omega-3 fatty acids enhanced the statin-mediated reductions in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and also helped improve other lipid characteristics including triglycerides, non-high density lipoprotein cholesterol, and lipoprotein particle size.

"This combination represents a therapeutic option for these patients in whom National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III goals are unachievable with monotherapy and/or other combination strategies," the authors conclude. "With a low incidence of adverse events, combination therapy with prescription omega-3 fatty acids and a statin warrants consideration as a therapy for patients with combined dyslipidemia and persistent hypertriglyceridemia."

The report was funded in part by Reliant Pharmaceuticals.

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