PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. – When it comes to seeing clearly, many people struggle from chronic or acute inflammation within the eye, which is a condition called Uveitis.
An international coalition of eye researchers is working to classify 25 of the most common types of Uveitis, which can affect all age groups and is the fifth leading cause of blindness in the U.S. with blurry vision, floaters and sensitivity.
Dr. Gabriela Olivares, an optometrist with the Eye Center in Pembroke Pines, said Uveitis is also linked to some serious underlying health issues.
“Until recently, Uveitis was classified based off the location of where the Uveitis or inflammation was, whether it was in the front part of the eye, the middle or the back part. So now these researchers got together and they were better able to classify Uveitis so this leads to better diagnosis, treatment and outcomes for these patients,” she said.
Olivares said patients with recurring inflammation in the eye need to be referred to specialists for more diagnostic testing.
And a small clinical trial is suggesting that stem cells from umbilical cords may reduce the death rate for COVID-19 patients who are on ventilators.
In the five-month study done in India, 40 patients infected with the virus were randomly assigned to either receive umbilical cord stem cells in saline solution or just plain saline.
All of the patients had severe pneumonia and were hospitalized on ventilators.
Half of the patients who received the stem cells survived compared to one-fifth of those in the control group.
Scientists said those with underlying health conditions were 4.5 times more likely to survive with stem cell therapy compared with those who received the saline placebo.