As part of the ongoing effort to raise awareness about retinal degenerative diseases, the Foundation Fighting Blindness joins organizations around the globe in observation of World Rare Disease Day: Wednesday, February 29, 2012. This collaboration will focus attention on the needs of patients and families affected by rare diseases, highlighting lesser-known conditions as a public health issue.
Most of the conditions the Foundation is working tirelessly to cure are considered “rare” because they affect less than 200,000 Americans. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), there are nearly 7,000 such diseases affecting around 30 million Americans (about 1 in 10 people). The Foundation’s website offers disease information and research updates related to the following rare retinal diseases, which collectively affect approximately 200,000 Americans and stem from defects in about 200 different genes:
Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA)