Omega-3 reduces discomfort produced by contact lenses
A controlled, randomised trial was carried out on 72 adults with inflammation associated with discomfort from contact lenses to assess whether the anti-inflammatory therapeutic strategy (topical corticosteriods and omega-3 fatty acid supplementation) has an effect on such problems. The individuals received: placebo (olive oil); oral fish oil (900 mg/day eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) + 600 mg/day docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)); oral fish oil with linseed oil (900 mg/day EPA + 600 mg/day DHA + 900 mg/day alpha-linoleic acid); or omega-3 eye-drops (0.025% EPA + 0.0025% DHA 4 times/day) for 12 weeks. Follow-up visits were conducted at the start and at weeks 4 and 12. In week 12, patients who had received placebo were assigned to receive low-potency 0.1% fluorometholone (FML), (drops, 3 times/day) for 2 weeks (until week 14).
In week 12, the score on a dry-eye questionnaire was significantly lower in the group that received fish oil, compared to the placebo group. The FML produced significant reductions in interleukins (IL) 17A and 6 compared to the start of the trial. In week 12, levels of IL-17ª dropped significantly from values at the start in the topical fish oil and omega-3 groups, compared to placebo; and levels of IL-6 in tears dropped to a statistically significant extent in all interventions with omega-3, compared to placebo.
Discomfort caused by contact lenses were reduced after supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids.