To test the hypothesis that 12 months of seal oil omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω-3 PUFA) supplementation will stop the known progression of diabetic sensorimotor polyneuropathy (DSP) in type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM).
Individuals with T1DM and evidence of DSP as determined by a Toronto Clinical Neuropathy Score ≥1 were recruited to participate in a single-arm, open-label trial of seal oil ω-3 PUFA supplementation (10 mL·d-1; 750 mg eicosapentaenoic acid, 560 mg docosapentaenoic acid, and 1,020 mg docosahexaenoic acid) for 1 year. The primary outcome was the 1-year change in corneal nerve fiber length (CNFL) measured by in vivo corneal confocal microscopy, with sensory and nerve conduction measures as secondary outcomes.
Forty participants (53% female), aged 48 pa14 years, body mass index 28.1 8.5.8 with diabetes duration of 27 .818 years, were enrolled. At baseline, 23 participants had clinical DSP and 17 did not. Baseline CNFL was 8.3 we2.9 mm/mm2 and increased 29% to 10.1 an3.7 mm/mm2 (p = 0.002) after 12 months of supplementation. There was no change in nerve conduction or sensory function.
Twelve months of ω-3 supplementation was associated with increase in CNFL in T1DM.