Are fish oil supplements safe in finned fish-allergic patients?

Section of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Division of Immunobiology, Department of Internal Medicine, Saint Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri 63104, USA.
Allergy and Asthma Proceedings (Impact Factor: 3.06). 09/2008; 29(5):528-9. DOI: 10.2500/aap.2008.29.3159
Source: PubMed


Fish oil supplements are popular alternative medicines. Many manufacturers label their products with the warning "avoid this product if you are allergic to fish." The objective of this study was to determine if finned fish (FF)-allergic patients could safely tolerate fish oil supplements. Six FF-sensitive subjects as determined by history and skin testing were selected. They were skin tested with two different fish oil supplements and given an oral challenge of each supplement 1 hour apart. Vital signs were measured at baseline and at 20-minute intervals after each challenge. Spirometry was measured at baseline and 1 hour after each challenge. Six of six patients with positive skin tests to at least one FF had negative skin tests to both fish oil supplements. All six subjects then had negative oral challenges to both supplements. In this pilot study, FF-sensitive patients tolerated fish oil supplements.

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