Currently there is no known cure for retinitis pigmentosa. However, research has shown that vitamin A palmitate may slow the progression of certain forms of RP. Your ophthalmologist can advise you about the risks and benefits of vitamin A palmitate and how much you can safely take. Taking too much vitamin A palmitate can be toxic, and evidence of vitamin A palmitate’s effect on RP progression is not substantial.
Another recommendation for slowing vision loss from RP is to wear sunglasses to protect your retina from harmful ultraviolet (UV) light.
Retinitis pigmentosa research is being conducted in areas such as gene therapy and transplant options. Since RP is a genetically-based disease, gene therapy has become a widely explored area of research, particularly in identifying ways to insert healthy genes into the retina. And as hereditary causes for RP are discovered, researchers hope to develop treatments to prevent the progression of retinitis pigmentosa.
For people who have RP, it is important to remember that there are many low-vision devices, tips and rehabilitation services designed specifically to help people with low vision maintain an active and independent lifestyle. Ask your ophthalmologist for more information and resources near you.