Evaluation of clinical safety and beneficial effects of a fish oil containing lipid emulsion (Lipoplus, MLF541): Data from a prospective, randomized, multicenter trial*

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Abstract

Objective:

To prove safety and effectiveness of a lipid emulsion enriched with n-3 fatty acids from fish oil (Lipoplus) within the setting of parenteral nutrition of patients after major abdominal surgery and to determine whether there are effects on outcome parameters.

Design:

Prospective, randomized, double-blind, multicenter trial.

Setting:

University and surgical teaching hospitals.

Patients:

After obtaining informed consent, 256 patients undergoing major abdominal surgery were randomized. Parameters of safety, effectiveness, and outcome were routine laboratory parameters, complication rates, length of stay in the intensive care unit, and length of hospital stay. In addition we determined in patient subgroups of 30 patients each, the changes of the content of selected long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, the leukotriene synthetic capacity and the antioxidant α-tocopherol.

Interventions:

Participating patients were randomized to receive either Lipoplus (group I; n = 127 patients) or Intralipid (group II; n = 129 patients). Parenteral nutrition was initiated immediately after surgery and ended on day 5 after surgery.

Measurements and Main Results:

No significant differences between groups I and II were observed when comparing routine laboratory parameters during the perioperative period. Plasma levels of eicosapentaenoic acid, leukotriene B5, and antioxidant content were significantly increased in group I. Furthermore, there was a significantly shorter length of hospital stay of ≈21% (17.2 vs. 21.9 days; p = .0061) in group I.

Conclusions:

Our findings indicate that the administration of Lipoplus in the postoperative period after major abdominal surgery is safe and results in a significantly shorter length of hospital stay. Administration of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in the postoperative period can be considered a valuable choice for patients requiring parenteral nutrition after major abdominal surgery.

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