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RP (Retinitis pigmentosa)

What is RP?  For those with this condition it is R.I.P. without the "I".


It is a hereditary eye disorder characterized by progressively worse night blindness (low light eyesight) and tunnel vision (loss of ability to see the outer borders of the visual field going on  to something like looking through a smaller and smaller peephole).  There are associated difficulties such as poor depth and color perception, decreased ability to adjust to changes in light level and recognize faces.  All lights artificial and natural except bright  and/or direct sunlight get dimmer and dimmer.  The stars go away but the moon sticks around a lot longer.  Some have intolerance to bright sunlight and glare.  Those with RP are more likely to be nearsighted and /or astigmatic than farsighted.  Cataracts are not uncommon.

Cause???: genetic miscoding of the rhodopsin molecule so it does not assume the correct configuration required for transport through the intercompartmental membrane of the photoreceptors (rods and cones).  It therefore cannot carry out a subsequent series of steps in the process of receiving and forwarding light/vision messages and in the photo cells' maintenance.  The latter in time waste away and die.   This eventually spells R.I.P. for eyesight.  No, we do not say Amen.   

Cure: None

Experimental Interventions: Genetic Therapy, Retinal Transplant, Retinal Cell Transplant, Artificial Retina Implant, injection of survival factor, possible stem cell use.

Precautions/Preventive Measures: Sun exposure prevention, protective eyewear  (protect from both UV and blue light).

Helpful Supplements and foods: Vit A 15,000 IU a day (take with a little bit of fat); Vit A rich foods; Lutein 20 mg a day (avoid taking at the same time as antioxidants); Lutein rich foods (spinach, mustard greens, kale, brocolli, yellow corn 5 times a week); Zeaxanthine rich foods (yellow/orange fruits and vegetables; take but limit Vit E to less than 400 IU a day if you want to see better, 400 IU/day to prevent Macular Degeneration (take with a little fat).

Body & Mind Care: healthy lifestyle, eye rest, eye massage, adequate sleep; positive attitude, strong will, support, prayer, visualization, meditation

Technological Aids: computer aids, reading aids, visual aids, mobility aids  

Seeing eye dogs (I actually saw more seeing eye spouses and relatives or friends than dogs during the conference.  I prefer the human touch myself.).



Visualization i

Darkness revives my rods and cones

Each heartbeat rejuvenates them

Each breath revitalizes them

Each nerve activity stimulates them

Each metabolic reaction nourishes them

Vitamin A energizes them

Antioxidants protect them

The joy of sight begets new functions

I now have the eyes of a mouse, cat and fish

My eye cells REGENERATE !!!

I see clearly day and night

indoors and outdoors

in artificial and natural light

at all angles of the sun

and throughout the periphery

dr G 1996


last revised 22 June 2005