Pharmacy: Fish Oil and Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation: Uses, Effectiveness, and Safety

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About Course #Y8014

Start Date: September 10, 2019

Expiration Date: September 10, 2022

In 21st century health care, increased emphasis focuses on wellness and disease prevention, a central theme of integrative care. Integrative health care encompasses conventional and nontraditional health approaches in a coordinated way. All healthcare professionals should have an understanding of integrative health, its elements, and those products and practices that have been shown to be effective therapeutic measures. More than 30% of U.S. adults and about 12% of children report use of healthcare approaches developed outside of conventional, or Western, medicine in the most recent comprehensive survey on the use of nonmainstream health approaches in the United States. These measures can be "complementary" or "alternative" in nature.

Fish oil is currently the number one dietary supplement used by adults and children in the United States. According to the 2012 NHIS, nearly 8% of adults and approximately 1% of children had taken fish oil within the previous 30 days before completing the survey. Many uses have been proposed for fish oil supplements. Consumers have difficulty evaluating the literature and making appropriate choices with regard to the uses, dosing, adverse effects, interactions, and product quality. Health professionals who are knowledgeable about omega-3 fatty acid supplements can assist patients in the appropriate use of these products to achieve better health.

Universal Activity Number (UAN) - 0607-0000-19-015-H01-P

Type of Activity - Knowledge

Topic Designator - 01 - Disease State Management/Drug Therapy

Course Objectives

  • Identify the components of fish oil and other omega-3 fatty acid-containing supplements responsible for their effectiveness.
  • List potential uses of fish oil and other omega-3 fatty acid-containing supplements based on the evidence for their effectiveness.
  • Explain common adverse effects and safety concerns when using fish oil and other omega-3 fatty acid-containing supplements.
  • Apply practical considerations of the use of fish oil and other omega-3 fatty acid-containing supplements to the education of patients using these products.
  • Compare the use of fish oil and other omega-3 fatty acid-containing supplements with other products used for the same conditions.

About the Author

Peggy Piascik, PhD, RPh, received her Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy from Ohio Northern University (ONU) and a PhD in Pharmacology from The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. Dr. Piascik is a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and Science at the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy (UKCOP). Dr. Piascik speaks at continuing education conferences on the topics of new drugs, dietary supplements, and personalized medicine. She teaches a problem-based elective course in the area of herbal and dietary supplements, and co-coordinates an elective course in behavior modification coaching.

Course Disclosures

  • Courses must be completed on or before the expiration date noted in the course description above.
  • You must score 75% or higher on the final exam and complete the course evaluation to pass this course and receive a certificate of completion.
  • Through our review processes, Western Schools ensures that this course content is presented in a balanced, unbiased manner and is free from commercial influence. It is Western Schools' policy not to accept commercial support.
  • All persons involved in the planning and development of this course have disclosed no relevant financial relationships or other conflicts of interest related to the course content.

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