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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What causes retinitis pigmentosa?

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  • Retina Australia (Queensland) provides peer support, information, awareness and advocacy to people with degenerating sight due to a retinal eye disease. Some examples of retinal … View Profile

    In normally sighted people, the rods and cones die off very slowly so that only some elderly people have difficulty in seeing.  However, in people with retinitis pigmentosa, it is known that rods, in particular and to a lesser extent, cones, die at a much faster rate.  The cause of this accelerated cell death is not known at present.

    It is clear, however, that genetic changes result in either the presence of abnormal proteins or enzymes within the retina and that visual fields are affected more than the visual acuity.

    There are hundreds of different genetic variations, which explains why every family is different.

    This is the advice from Retina Australia based on broadly available research.  Every case of retinitis pigmentosa  is individual and it is always recommended to seek the advice of your optometrist and / or ophthalmologist.

    For further information, or to contact Retina Australia (Qld) go to the website at  or the national organisation at

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