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Retinitis Pigmentosa Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis and Treatment

What Is Retinitis Pigmentosa?

It is a medical term used for specific genetic disorders, all of which affects the ability of retina to respond to light. The word genetic indicates that retinitis pigmentosa is an inherited disease. Moreover, it causes gradual progression of visual loss, instigating with decreased sight at night time and loss of side (peripheral) vision. Ultimately, retinitis pigmentosa results in blindness. Retinitis pigmentosa is incurable.

What Are The Symptoms Of Retinitis Pigmentosa?

Usually, its symptoms start to appear during the childhood years, leading serious vision problems by early adulthood. Few of its common symptoms include:

  •  Decreased vision in low light or at night time.
  •  Tunnel vision caused by peripheral vision loss.
  •  Central vision loss (occurs in its advanced cases).

When Is The High Time To Seek A Medical Professional?

In case you notice the above mentioned symptoms related to retinitis pigmentosa, particularly the problem of vision at night time, immediately call up for an appointment.

What Causes Retinitis Pigmentosa?

The disorder runs in families. A number of genetic defects are responsible for causing retinitis pigmentosa.
In usual instances, rods (cells that control our night vision) are mostly affected whereas in few of its cases, more damage is caused to retinal cone cells. Formation of dark deposits in retina is the prominent sign of its presence.
People with a family history of retinitis pigmentosa are more likely to experience it as well.

What Are The Potential Complications Of Retinitis Pigmentosa?

Central and peripheral vision loss occurs gradually. Cataracts and macular edema are the two common complications of retinitis pigmentosa. In case cataracts are playing a role in your vision loss, you can simply discuss your doctor for its removal.

How Is Retinitis Pigmentosa Diagnosed?

In order to diagnose retinitis pigmentosa your doctor will suggest a number of tests, these tests will help evaluate your retina, such as

  •  Refraction test.
  •  Pupil reflex response.
  •  Color vision.
  •  Retinal photography.
  •  Side vision test.
  •  Retina exam through ophthalmoscopy.
  •  Intraocular pressure.
  •  Slit lamp examination.
  •  Visual acuity.
  •  Electroretinogram.
  •  Fluorescein angiography.

How Is Retinitis Pigmentosa Treated?

Unfortunately, there is no effective treatment for retinitis pigmentosa present today. However; in order to preserve your vision, wear sunglasses while going out in the sun. Few studies reveal that antibiotics (for example vitamin A palmitate) may slow the progression of retinitis pigmentosa. Though, high doses of antibiotics tend increase the chances of complications related to your liver.
Furthermore, researchers are conducting clinical trials for evaluating new treatments for RP. Few

other treatments of retinitis pigmentosa are:

  •  Use of DHA (omega 3 fatty acid).
  •  Microchip implants (for treating blindness and other eye conditions).


Retinitis pigmentosa is a group of genetic disorders. If you or your spouse has retinitis pigmentosa, seek out genetic counseling before planning a baby. Genetic testing will help determine the risks of RP in your baby.

What Is The Prognosis Of Retinitis Pigmentosa?

As mentioned earlier, retinitis pigmentosa persists to progress gradually until it turns your vision to complete blindness.


By : Natural Health News

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