Research roundup

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Debbie Rigby takes a look at the latest in research news

Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid (Fish Oil) Supplementation and the Prevention of Clinical Cardiovascular Disease

This review by the American Heart Association suggests treatment with omega-3 PUFA supplements is reasonable for patients with a recent myocardial infarction (MI) and with prevalent heart failure without preserved left ventricular function. Evidence is lacking for primary prevention of CHD, heart failure, and AF. The report notes the risk of major adverse effects such as bleeding and stroke associated with omega-3 PUFA supplementation is low.

Circulation. 2017;135:00–00.


Paracetamol use and asthma in children

Based on questionnaire, cross-sectional, cohort, and case-control studies, this short review concludes there is some association between paracetamol use and the development of asthma in children. However, the authors conclude that paracetamol should not be withheld from children at this time until large controlled trials are conducted to confirm this effect. Regular use of  paracetamol to relieve fever or pain does not seem to exacerbate asthma in children more than ibuprofen does.

Canadian Family Physician 2017;63:211-213.


Vitamin D and Statin-Related Myalgia

This expert commentary discusses the association between low vitamin D levels and higher risk for statin-induced myalgia. Low vitamin D levels may contribute to muscle pain symptoms more generally, including in patients with statin-induced myalgia or nonspecific myalgia. The pharmacist author suggests assessing and treating low vitamin D levels before starting or restarting a statin in patients who develop muscle pain while taking a statin.

Medscape, March 10, 2017.


Early non-persistence with dabigatran and rivaroxaban in patients with atrial fibrillation

A retrospective cohort study using Canadian administrative data over 16 years shows approximately one in three patients are non-persistent to dabigatran or rivaroxaban within 6 months after drug initiation. Importantly, non-persistence with either dabigatran or rivaroxaban was significantly associated with worse clinical outcomes of stroke/TIA/death.

Heart, on-line first March 2017.

Medscape comment






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