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Stroke survivors regain vision with new light therapy

In honor Stroke Awareness Month, light-based therapy developers NovaVision announce successful treatment of stroke victims using its Vision Restoration Therapy.


May is National Stroke Awareness month, and Boca Raton, Fla.-based NovaVision is using the occasion to trumpet a successful new therapy for partial vision loss due to stroke.

According to NovaVision's statistics, stroke is a primary cause of serious long-term disability and often causes partial blindness due to neurological trauma and visual field loss. For example, a stroke victim might retain general sight, but lose their peripheral vision or even the ability to see if he or she moves eyes to the left or right. Until now, according to NovaVision research, the opinion amongst most physicians stated such unfortunate cases were untreatable.

But, NovaVision researchers report its clinically supported, light stimulation-based Vision Restoration Therapy (VRT) is improving sight for stroke victims with its noninvasive treatment. Light therapy devices like this resemble a laptop with special optical peripherals that issue light stimulation into the eye in cooperation with imagery on the screen.

The idea of using modern technology to stimulate brain pathways has already proven successful using video games to improve motor skills and small robots that teach patients how to use disabled limbs once again. In the case of VRT, treatment lasts for six months in a supervised clinical setting while patients perform twice-day sessions, six days per week. Patients focus and respond to light stimuli on an FDA-cleared medical device, redeveloping the brain's ability to adapt and form new neural connections and recover pathways lost to stroke.

And, rather than just rely on a press release and some sporadic Web reports to get the news out, the developers are letting their happy patients share their good news via their Web site. It might be an answer to someone you care about suffering from partial sight loss.