Document Detail

Effects of docosahexaenoic acid supplementation during pregnancy on gestational age and size at birth: randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial in Mexico.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20715595     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: The need for omega-3 fatty acids, especially docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), during pregnancy has received much attention, but evidence of effects on birth outcomes is limited. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate whether prenatal DHA supplementation increases gestational age and birth size. METHODS: We conducted a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial in Cuernavaca, Mexico. We randomly assigned 1,094 pregnant women (18 to 35 years of age; median DHA dietary intake, 55 mg/day) to 400 mg/day of algal DHA or placebo from 18 to 22 weeks of gestation through delivery. Birth outcomes (968 live births and 5 stillbirths) were ascertained from hospital records within 24 hours of delivery. RESULTS: Intention-to-treat analysis showed no differences between the control and DHA group (all p > .05) in mean gestational age (39.1 + 1.7 and 39.0 +/- 1.9 weeks, respectively), weight (3.20 + 0.47 and 3.21 +/- 0.45 kg, respectively), length (50.3 +/- 2.7 and 50.3 +/- 2.3 cm, respectively) and head circumference (34.3 +/- 1.8 and 34.3 +/- 1.5 cm, respectively) at birth. Offspring of supplemented primigravidae (n = 370) were heavier (difference, 99.4 g; 95% CI, 5.5 to 193.4) and had larger head circumferences (difference, 0.5 cm; 95% CI, 0.1 to 0.9) than controls; the differences in multigravidae (n = 603) were -53.3 g (95% CI, -126.8 to 20.2) and -0.2 cm (95% CI, -0.4 to 0.1), respectively (p < .05 for heterogeneity). CONCLUSIONS: Prenatal DHA supplementation of primigravid women may result in increased birth size in a population where dietary DHA intakes are very low. Benefits of the intervention on infant health and neurodevelopment are under study.
Usha Ramakrishnan; Aryeh D Stein; Socorro Parra-Cabrera; Meng Wang; Beth Imhoff-Kunsch; Sergio Juárez-Márquez; Juan Rivera; Reynaldo Martorell
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article; Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Food and nutrition bulletin     Volume:  31     ISSN:  0379-5721     ISO Abbreviation:  Food Nutr Bull     Publication Date:  2010 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-08-18     Completed Date:  2010-09-21     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7906418     Medline TA:  Food Nutr Bull     Country:  Japan    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  S108-16     Citation Subset:  IM    
Hubert Department of Global Health, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, 1518 Clifton Road, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Birth Weight*
Body Size
Dietary Supplements* / adverse effects
Docosahexaenoic Acids / administration & dosage*,  adverse effects
Double-Blind Method
Fetal Growth Retardation / prevention & control
Gestational Age*
Head / growth & development
Infant, Newborn
Pregnancy Complications / prevention & control
Pregnancy Outcome
Premature Birth / prevention & control
Prenatal Nutritional Physiological Phenomena*
Urban Population / statistics & numerical data
Young Adult
Grant Support
Reg. No./Substance:
25167-62-8/Docosahexaenoic Acids

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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