Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA) for Preterm Infants and Intelligence

JF Gould et al. NEJM 2022; 387: 1579-1588. Neonatal Docosahexaenoic Acid in Preterm Infants and Intelligence at 5 Years

Background: “Because its accretion into the brain is greatest during the final trimester of pregnancy, infants born before 29 weeks’ gestation do not receive the normal supply of DHA.”

In this randomized placebo-controlled study of infants born prior to 29 weeks gestation, DHA supplementation 60 mg/kg/day was given to the study group and cognitive outcomes were measured at 5 yrs. 480 (73%) had an full-scale intelligence quotient (FSIQ) score available — 241 in the DHA group and 239 in the control group.

Key findings:  FSIQ scores were 95.4±17.3 in the DHA group and 91.9±19.1 in the control group. Adverse events were similar in the two groups.

Short take video: DHA in Premature Infants

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