AutismChildrenOmega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 supplementation in autistic adults

Researchers from the University of Pavia in Italy report the results from a small study.

First, the details.

  • 19 young adults with severe autism (Childhood Autism Rating Scale greater than 40) participated.
  • They received 2 fish oil capsules per day (0.93 grams of eicosapentaenoic acid [EPA] and docosahexaenoic acid [DHA] plus 5 mg of vitamin E) for 6 weeks.

And, the results.

  • The severity and frequency of problematic behaviors didn’t change during treatment or for 6 weeks after treatment.
  • No effect on the number of episodes and severity of behavior aberrations was observed.

The bottom line?
It’s a very small study, with no comparison group.

An earlier small study in 13 children was also negative.

It’s time to move on from preliminary studies.

9/2/08 22:35 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.