Based on the success of their pilot study, our research team has received a grant from the National Eye Institute, National Institutes of Health, to support further research on acupuncture treatment for Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP). The RP Study, which kicked off in the Spring of 2014 , will be done through Nova Southeastern University in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and led by Dr. Ava Bittner.
With the one-year, grant, the research study will measure ocular and retinal blood flow in patients with retinitis pigmentosa (RP) before and after treating them with either electro-acupuncture or transcorneal electrical stimulation. With limited conventional treatments available for patients with RP, the team hopes their research will uncover potential alternative therapies to reduce vision loss. If the results of this study indicate a benefit from acupuncture treatments, further study will be undertaken.
Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a slowly progressive retinal degeneration for which there is no proven treatment. Patients are interested in trying alternative therapies to try to reduce their vision loss, but only limited research evidence exists to support their use and potential benefit. The goal of this research project is to gain a better understanding of possible changes in ocular and retinal blood flow and measures of vision in RP patients receiving two promising therapies, electroacupuncture and transcorneal electrical stimulation.
The Foundation Fighting Blindness recently featured the Johns Hopkins research team on acupuncture treatment for retinitis pigmentosa on their web site.