Relation between red blood cell omega-3 fatty acid index and bleeding during acute myocardial infarction

Adam C. Salisbury, William S. Harris, Amit P. Amin, Kimberly J. Reid, James H. O'Keefe, John A. Spertus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Omega-3 fatty acids have multiple cardiovascular benefits but may also inhibit platelet aggregation and increase bleeding risk. If this platelet inhibition is clinically meaningful, patients with the highest omega-3 indexes (red blood cell eicosapentaenoic acid plus docosahexaenoic acid), which reflect long-term omega-3 fatty acid intake, should be at the risk for bleeding. In this study, 1,523 patients from 24 United States centers who had their omega-3 indexes assessed at the time of acute myocardial infarction were studied. The rates of serious bleeding (Thrombolysis In Myocardial Infarction [TIMI] major or minor) and mild to moderate bleeding (TIMI minimal) were identified in patients with low (<4%), intermediate (4% to 8%), and high (>8%) omega-3 indices. There were no differences in bleeding across omega-3 index categories. After multivariate adjustment, there remained no association between the omega-3 index and either serious (per 2% increase, relative risk 1.03, 95% confidence interval 0.90 to 1.19) or mild to moderate bleeding (per 2% increase, relative risk 1.02, 95% confidence interval 0.85 to 1.23). In conclusion, no relation was found between the omega-3 index and bleeding in this large, multicenter cohort of patients with acute myocardial infarction, suggesting that concerns about bleeding should not preclude the use of omega-3 supplements or increased fish consumption when clinically indicated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13-18
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Cardiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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