A British man who suffers from Retinitis Pigmentosa will be taking part in a fundraising trek tomorrow that will span ten days and him plus others walk from one side of the UK to the other. The trek will be completed by a number of 20 sufferers plus family members affected by patients diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa to help raise important funds for a charity supporting people with incurable eye disease.
The fundraising hike will begin from St Bee’s on the west coast of Cumbria finishing at the village of Robin Hood’s Bay on the coast over in the east and will cover a total of just over two hundred miles, with dales, lae walking, and bogs en route. Let us not forget that these walkers are losing or have lost some or all of their sight to the disease!
Retinitis pigmentosa damages the layer of tissue at the back of the inner eye that then converts light images into nerve signals.It is a disease that can be herditary and caused by a number of genetic defects.
It is the eyes rods most likely to be affected as these control our night vision. In some cases though the retinal cone cells are most damaged. it is dark deposits in the retina that is the early sign of the onset of RP. The condition is fairly uncommon ( in the United States numbers are reported of affecting about 1 in 4,000 people).
Many people notice problems in early childhood, these are early symptoms and severe vision problems do not usually develop until early adulthood. Patients may experience poorer vision at night or in low light, possible loss of peripheral vision causing tunnel vision and in advanced cases a loss of central vision.
There is no cure for RP and the fund raising money of these brave hikers will be given to the British Retinitis Pigmentosa Society (BRPS) to fund medical research and continue to support patients with the condition.