Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Retinitis Pigmentosa Evaluation

The evaluation of retinitis pigmentosa begins with a history and physical examination. This includes vision testing, an examination the retina with an ophthalmoscope, and a slit lamp exam.

Physical findings in someone with retinitis pigmentosa may include:

  • Abnormal retina:
    • Detected during examination of the retina
    • Spicules: dark spots on the retina
    • Narrowed retinal arteries
    • Central disk may look waxy and yellow
  • Vision change:
    • Loss of peripheral vision

Tests are usually not necessary to make the diagnosis of retinitis pigmentosa. However, genetic testing may be performed on the patient and family members, in order to identify whether the condition is hereditary.

Continue to Retinitis Pigmentosa Treatment

Last Updated: Jul 8, 2009 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Retinitis Pigmentosa References
  1. Kalloniatis M, Fletcher EL. Retinitis pigmentosa: understanding the clinical presentation, mechanisms and treatment options. Clin Exp Optom. 2004 Mar;87(2):65-80. [15040773]
  2. Sandberg MA, Gaudio AR, Berson EL. Disease course of patients with pericentral retinitis pigmentosa. Am J Ophthalmol. 2005 Jul;140(1):100-6. [15953579]
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