News

Message To My Younger Self: Carrie

January 10th, 2014 by FFB Canada

1. Can you share with us what retinal eye disease you have and when you  were diagnosed? I have Usher Syndrome (type 2), which is hearing loss combined with retinitis pigmentosa. I wasn’t correctly diagnosed until age 24 but my symptoms started when I was around 16 with night blindness. My hearing loss began at…

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Allergies May Protect Against AMD

January 8th, 2014 by FFB Canada

A history of allergies may reduce a person’s risk of developing age-related macular degeneration (AMD). That is the message of a European study led by a German scientist, Dr. Sascha Fauser, at the University Hospital of Cologne. The study involved over 3,800 Europeans, who were part of a European genetics database. Half had AMD, and…

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Youth Speak Out About Vision Loss

January 5th, 2014 by FFB Canada

Thanks to the support of RBC Foundation, our 2012 Vision Quest conferences in Edmonton and Toronto included Youth Spaces. In each city a panel of youth shared their experiences living with vision loss – there was laughter and a bit of heartache. The silence around the impact of vision loss is profound. Adolescence can be…

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There’s An App For That

January 4th, 2014 by FFB Canada

Written and submitted by Gerry Chevalier. Tens of thousands of blind and low vision people are enjoying the fun and simplicity of the revolutionary iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad along with their sighted peers. These devices are considered the closest thing to the ‘holy grail’ – a device that does everything a blind or low…

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The Question Remains

January 4th, 2014 by FFB Canada

Written and submitted by Alisha It was a cold night and I was shivering. I peered off into the distance, eager to see any evidence of a bus. I saw familiar lights and a square-faced vehicle inch towards the traffic lights. I couldn’t make out the number on the bus and I couldn’t see the…

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Fine-tuning Optogenetic Treatments to Create More Useful Vision

December 16th, 2013 by FFB Canada

Optogenetics is an important new science that may have sight-restoring capacities for people living with retinal blindness. Optogenetics uses light-sensitive molecules derived from algae, called channel rhodopsins, to give light-sensing capacity to nerve cells. Retinal degenerative diseases usually attack and eventually destroy the rod and cone photoreceptors, but often these and other retinal cells remain…

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Argus II Retinal Prosthesis Named Invention of the Year

December 14th, 2013 by FFB Canada

Popular Science has named the Argus II Retinal Prosthesis its invention of the year. Each year, the editors of this science magazine review thousands of products in search of the top innovations of the year— technologies that represent a significant leap in their categories. The Argus II took the top honor in the Health category,…

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Youth Space Spotlight: Cathy

November 30th, 2013 by FFB Canada

1. Can you share with us what retinal eye disease you have and when you were diagnosed? When I was 15, I was diagnosed with cataracts. I woke up one morning with persistent blurry vision. My mother immediately brought me to my optometrist, who made the diagnosis. Several complications accompanied my cataracts, including numerous retinal…

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Creating An Orphan Drug Policy for Canada

November 18th, 2013 by FFB Canada

Last fall, the federal Minister of Health announced that Canada would “introduce a new approach that will better support the development and authorization of drugs for rare diseases.” Commonly called an orphan drug plan, such regulations encourage drug manufacturers to test therapies for rare diseases like retinitis pigmentosa, Stargardt disease and choroideremia, and to seek…

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Eyelea Approved to Treat Wet AMD in Canada

November 8th, 2013 by FFB Canada

An additional treatment option for people with wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) will soon be available in Canada. Health Canada has just approved Eyelea, a drug made and marketed by Bayer Inc. Eyelea (also known as aflibercept) is used to treat the most severe form of AMD known as wet AMD. The drug is given…

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