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Stroke. 2008 Jul;39(7):2052-8. doi: 10.1161/STROKEAHA.107.509455. Epub 2008 May 1.

Reduction in the recurrence of stroke by eicosapentaenoic acid for hypercholesterolemic patients: subanalysis of the JELIS trial.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Toyama University Hospital, 2630 Sugitani, Toyama, Toyama, 930-0194, Japan.

Erratum in

  • Stroke. 2008 Sep;39(9): e149.



The JELIS trial examined the preventive effect of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) against coronary artery diseases. Hypercholesterolemic patients received statin only (no EPA group: n=9319) or statin with EPA (EPA group: n=9326) for around 5 years. EPA significantly suppressed the incidence of coronary events in previous analysis. Herein, we investigated the effects of EPA on the primary and secondary prevention of stroke.


We conducted a subanalysis of JELIS with respect to stroke incidence in the primary and secondary prevention subgroups defined as those without and with a prior history of stroke using Cox proportional hazard ratios, adjusted for baseline risk factor levels.


As for primary prevention of stroke, this occurred in 114 (1.3%) of 8862 no EPA group and in 133 (1.5%) of 8841 EPA group. No statistically significant difference in total stroke incidence (Hazard Ratio, 1.08; 95% confidence interval, 0.95 to 1.22) was observed between the no EPA and the EPA groups. In the secondary prevention subgroup, stroke occurred in 48 (10.5%) of 457 no EPA group and in 33 (6.8%) of 485 EPA group, showing a 20% relative reduction in recurrent stroke in the EPA group (Hazard Ratio, 0.80; 95% confidence interval, 0.64 to 0.997).


Administration of highly purified EPA appeared to reduce the risk of recurrent stroke in a Japanese population of hypercholesterolemic patients receiving low-dose statin therapy. Further research is needed to determine whether similar benefits are found in other populations with lower levels of fish intake. The trial is registered at (number NCT00231738).

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