April 14, 2017

Stem Cells Therapy for Macular Dystrophy- Stargardt’s Disease is a kind of juvenile macular dystrophy, starting early in the life. It has been named after its first founder Dr. Stargardt’s in 1909 and is reported to be one of the most common forms of juvenile macular dystrophies. World Health Organization is further noted that one out of every 20,000 children, within the age group of 6-20 are being diagnosed with the dystrophy; irrespective of the gender.

Stem Cells Therapy for Macular Dystrophy

Stem Cells Therapy for Macular Dystrophy:

Stargardt’s disease is identified as a genetic condition inherited via dominant gene of either one parent or recessive genes from both the parents; moreover, with recent investigations, a gene that is responsible for the condition is identified to be ABCR or abca4. It has been observed that in many cases of Stargardt’s disease, the macula, a central part of the retina and its surrounding is affected. Furthermore, since macula is responsible for central, crisp vision and for color discrimination; its dystrophy or degradation may result in loss of visual acuity, visual sharpness, color discrimination and appearance of small blind spots.

Typically, children suffering with the said issue may complain about:

  • Decreased visual acuity: Many people have reported initial sudden mild loss of visual acuity, which may soon be normal after some relaxation; due to which people tend to ignore it many of the times. However, this should be considered as an alarming situation, with immediate need of expert’s advice.
  • Come and Go Vision: Many patients may experience frequent common episodes of visual loss or blind phases; at different time intervals. As a matter of fact, people may experience this come and go effect, due to disappearance and reappearance of object, on the damaged macula.
  • Eccentric Viewing: Reports indicate that the Stargardt’s disease can be characterized by the appearance of central blind spot, which progressively increases in size. Eventually, patients learn to redirect their eyes to see around the blind spots. It has been further apparent that patients should learn to place the image, adjacent to macula to maximize their visual field.
  • Photo stress and Adaptation to dark: Frequent complaints have been noted from children with Stargardt’s diseases, towards their adaption in dark and/or after sunlight exposure. It has been investigated and further suggested that light striking our retina may trigger a chemical reaction to damage rods and cones. Moreover, when a patient is exposed to bright sunlight; their retina may get bleached, thus decreasing its visual sharpness and increase blind spots.
  • Photophobia: Patients have as well reported complaints about increase light sensitivity and decreased color vision; due to damaged rods and cones as well as macula.

Being a genetic issue, no full proof treatment is reported against the issue; however, with the recent advent of stem cells therapy, it is possible to minimize the progression associated with the Stargardt’s degenerative dystrophy. Investigations have further suggested that differentiation capability of stem cells can be potentially useful in regeneration of damaged rods and cones; thus, adding up towards its functional restoration to some extent. Moreover, vasculogenesis abilities of these stem cells can as well be helpful in the formation of new blood vessels, in the area around the macula, helping it to be little bit functionally stronger. Since these stem cells have been isolated from patient’s own body sources, such as Bone Marrow and Adipose Tissue; they are reported to be absolutely safe and effective.

11 Replies to “Stem Cells Therapy for Macular Dystrophy (Stargardt’s Dystrophy)”

  1. This article is quite knowledgeable, to add this I want yo ask is, the same properties of treatment as like BM and Adipose Tissue is available in umbilical cord and blood as well or not..??

  2. My younger brother aged 33 had been diagnosed with dushands muscle dystrophy about 10 year’s back . His cpk levels also very high and over these 10 year’s he has put on a lot of weight. It’s mostly his feet that there is a problem. Can stem cell therapy help.

  3. Dear Sir,
    I live in Singapore, my son is 19 and has Stargardts disease which was diagnosed 10 years ago. We are interested in knowing the progress in Stem cell therapy and about its success rates.
    Can he get surgery?

    1. Dear Sunita,

      Thank you so much for showing interest in Advancells stem cells therapies. I would also like to add that Stargardt’s Disease is degenerative eye condition, wherein cells responsible for the visual acuity are degenerated progressively due to environmental triggers. So far, conventional medicine cannot cure the said condition. In this regard, clinical investigations using stem cell therapy have shown very encouraging results; we would like to send you details regarding global clinical investigations.
      Before proceeding further, we would like to request you to send your recent medical reports to come up with in depth analysis of your medical condition and offer the best possible treatment protocol.

      Thanks & Regards

  4. Hi sir,

    I am living in India. My 10 year old daughter is diagnosed with stargardt disease recently.
    We heard about stem cell therapy and want to know more about it.
    Can stem cell help her.
    please suggest us the best approach.

  5. Hello Sir

    I am living in India. My 18 year old son was diagnosed with stargardt disease 3 years back. So far it has not affected him much but now he has issues. Let me know about the stem cell therapy, how it can help the patient and where does it happen.

  6. Sir I m suffering also Herero macular deganrestion….may you help me or not?…I wants to restore my vision .what should I do???

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