Fish Oil Relieves Symptoms of Manic Depression
McLean Hospital Press Release

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From: Brian Downing Quig []
Subject: [CIA-DRUGS] Fish Oil Relieves Symptoms of Manic Depression - McLean
Hospital Press Release
Study Finds Fish Oil Relieves Symptoms of Manic Depression

May 13, 1999 -- Boston and Belmont, MA -- Researchers at Brigham and Womenís Hospital (BWH) and McLean Hospital have found that fish oil significantly remedies the symptoms of bipolar disorder (manic depression). Fish oil is especially high in omega-3 fatty acids, a type of polyunsaturated fat that is associated with other health benefits such as preventing cardiovascular disease. The study is published in the May issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry, a specialty journal of the American Medical Association.

"Our study results indicate fish oil does possess elements to stabilize mood," said lead author Andrew Stoll, MD, of Brigham and Womenís Hospital and McLean Hospital.

The four-month randomized study compared omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil) and a placebo (olive oil) in 30 outpatients with bipolar disease at BWH. Subjects, including men and women, from age 18 to 65, were also undergoing their prescribed treatment during the study.

Overall, nine of the 14 patients who received omega-3 fatty acids witnessed relief of their symptoms, while only three out of 16 patients who received the placebo witnessed such relief, according to Dr. Stoll.

"Although the data is preliminary, our study indicates omega-3 fatty acids are safe and beneficial for patients with bipolar disorder," said Dr. Stoll. "Our finding opens the door for more research on omega-3 fatty acidís effect on a variety of other psychiatric disorders, including major depression, schizophrenia and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)," he said.

BWH is a 663-bed nonprofit teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School and a founding member of Partners HealthCare System, an integrated health care delivery network. Internationally recognized as a leading academic health care institution, BWH is committed to excellence in patient care, medical research and the training and education of health care professionals. The hospitalís preeminence in all aspects of clinical care is coupled with its strength in medical research. A leading recipient of research grants from the National Institutes of Health, BWH conducts internationally acclaimed clinical, basic and epidemiological studies.

McLean Hospital, consistently ranked one of the countryís top psychiatric facilities, is the largest psychiatric teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School, an affiliate of Massachusetts General Hospital and a member of Partners HealthCare System, Inc. McLean maintains the largest research program of any private psychiatric hospital in the nation and is ranked 14th among all 5,000 independent U.S. hospitals in National Institutes of Health grant support.

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