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Fatty acids were assayed by gas chromatography and compared among the three matched groups.There were no differences between the major depression group and nondepression group in any FAs.
In this study, depression was evaluated using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS-D), with two cutoff points of 10 out of 11 and four out of five.The exclusion criteria of the study were: (1) patients who had cognitive impairment, such as dementia and delirium; (2) patients whose medical attendants decided that their participation in the study had problems in clinical service; (3) patients whose clinical diagnosis of lung cancer had changed after a pathological report; (4) patients who had a performance status of more than 2 points (Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group) assessed by oncologists (to avoid affecting the results due to severe physical condition); (5) patients who had any past or current psychiatric disorder, except for depression, according to their medical chart; (6) patients who were taking antidepressants, major tranquilisers, and drugs for thyroid disease according to their medical chart (to exclude the effect on results by way of modifying depression); (7) patients who had brain neoplasms or brain metastasis diagnosed by head CT scan or MRI tests; and (8) patients who had a cerebral infarction or hemorrhage diagnosed from the examination of CT scan or MRI, or by clinical symptoms.During the corresponding period, 1013 patients were admitted to the Thoracic Oncology ward, National Cancer Center Hospital East, Japan.Correspondence: Dr Y Uchitomi, Psycho-Oncology Division, National Cancer Center Research Institute East, 6-5-1 Kashiwanoha, Kashiwa-City, Chiba 277-8577, Japan.E-mail: yuchitom@Revised 12 September 2005; Accepted 27 October 2005Advance online publication 22 November 2005Previous studies suggested that omega-3 fatty acids (FAs) have therapeutic effects against depression, but there is no evidence in the oncological setting.All patients provided their written informed consent prior to enrolment in this study.
The inclusion criteria of the present study, containing those of the Lung Cancer Database Project, were as follows: (1) patients who had visited the National Cancer Center Hospital East for their clinically diagnosed but never treated primary lung cancer between July 1999 and November 2001; (2) patients who had been informed of their lung cancer diagnosis; (3) patients who were physically able to complete questionnaires; and (4) patients who provided the blood samples.
A total of 717 subjects in the Lung Cancer Database Project were divided into three groups by two cutoff points of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale depression subscale (HADS-D).
In all, 81 subjects of the nondepression and minor depression groups (HADS-D10) for age, gender, clinical stage, and performance status.
The minor depression group had higher mean levels of docosahexaenoic acid (mean±s.d.
(Major and minor depressions are one of the most common psychiatric problems in clinical oncological settings (Derogatis et al, 1983; Razavi and Stiefel, 1994; Mc Daniel et al, 1995).
Other studies have shown their possible therapeutic potential with few adverse effects in clinical trials (Nemets et al, 2002; Peet and Horrobin, 2002; Su et al, 2003).