• Dr A A Mundewadi

Ayurvedic Herbal Treatment for Stargardt's Disease

Stargardt's disease is the most common form of inherited juvenile macular degeneration and usually begins in late childhood. This medical condition involves a gradual buildup of fat deposits in the Retinal Pigment Epithelium (RPE) which cuts off nourishment to the photoreceptor cells in the macula, causing a gradual degeneration of these photoreceptor cells and ultimately a loss of vision. Currently, there is no specific management for this condition in the modern system of medicine.

Ayurvedic herbal treatment for Stargardt's disease is aimed at reversing the pathology of this condition and providing adequate nourishment to the photoreceptor cells in the macula part of the retina. Ayurvedic herbal medicines which have a specific action on the retina are used in high doses and for prolonged periods in order to halt the degeneration process and buildup gradual nourishment to the retina so that the photoreceptor cells start functioning at normal or near normal levels. Additional Ayurvedic herbal medicines are also used to remove the deposition of fat in the RPE so as to treat the root cause of the condition. This fat deposition is removed through the blood circulation gradually either through the gastrointestinal tract or through the kidneys.

While the main treatment for Stargardt's disease is in the form of oral Ayurvedic Herbal medicines, this treatment can also be supplemented with localised treatment in the form of eye drops or application of herbal pastes around the eyes. The regular and long-term use of herbal eye drops also helps to provide nourishment and maintains vision.

Most individuals affected with Stargardt's disease usually require regular Ayurvedic herbal treatment for 4-6 months in order to significantly benefit from treatment, prevent further loss of vision, and show actual improvement of vision. Since this disease is primarily seen in children, a lot of patience is required both on the part of the affected individual as well as the caretakers. However, persistent treatment brings about significant improvement in vision, and can therefore significantly improve the quality of life of such individuals.

Ayurvedic herbal treatment thus has a significant role to play in the management and treatment of Stargardt's disease.

Ayurvedic Herbal Treatment, Herbal medicines, Stargardt's disease

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