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NYU Medical Center Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine Helps Stroke & TBI Patients Reduce Vision Loss with NovaVision VRT.

BOCA RATON, Fla. -- Leader in Rehabilitation Medicine Expands Traditional Stroke & TBI Therapies to Improve Visual Deficits Once Considered Untreatable

NovaVision, Inc. today announced the NYU Medical Center Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine (New York, New York) is the latest medical institution to offer patients NovaVision VRT(TM) Vision Restoration Therapy(TM) (VRT). VRT is an FDA-cleared, non-invasive medical device that can help restore vision lost as a result of stroke or traumatic brain injury (TBI), a condition previously considered untreatable. While speech, physical and occupational therapies are the long-standing treatment regimens for stroke and brain trauma patients, VRT is the first FDA-cleared clinical application of rehabilitation for vision loss.

"NovaVision welcomes the Rusk Institute to the rapidly growing network of prestigious medical centers now offering NovaVision VRT. Vision Restoration Therapy represents a completely new rehabilitation modality for stroke and TBI patients," said NovaVision President and CEO Navroze Mehta. "Working with the Rusk Institute, a world leader in rehabilitation medicine, is an important step in expanding the availability of VRT and in broadening the rehabilitative access to vision therapy."

Developing the Fourth Pillar of Rehabilitation

The need for a rehabilitative therapy like VRT is substantial. An estimated 4.8 million people have survived a stroke (American Heart Association, 2004 Update), and at least 5.3 million Americans currently live with disabilities resulting from TBI (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, May 2004). Approximately 1.5 million stroke and TBI victims in the United States suffer from major visual field deficits, and that number grows by more than 90,000 new patients each year.

To date, more than 800 patients have been treated with VRT and clinical results are positive. Data from a recent retrospective study show more than 65 percent of patients who underwent VRT for the initial six-month treatment period showed measurable improvements in their vision. VRT is based on the principle of neuroplasticity--the ability of partially damaged neurons in the brain to compensate for injury and adjust their activity in response to stimulation from the environment. After stroke or TBI, a zone of residual vision exists between regions within the brain's vision-processing areas. Within this zone, there are areas that can be improved using precise patterns of stimulation.

Following a clinical assessment and diagnosis at the Rusk Institute, VRT is conducted in the comfort of the patient's home with the use of a VRT medical device. The patient performs a customized therapy which displays stimuli on the screen in the area identified during diagnostic that shows potential for recovery. The patient responds to the stimulus while focusing on the fixation point displayed. Repeated exposure to these stimuli over an initial treatment period of approximately six to seven months may activate neurons and help improve vision, with some patients showing improvements within a few months of beginning therapy.

For more information about the NovaVision VRT clinic at the Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine please visit www.novavisiontherapy.com or call 888.205.0800.

About NovaVision, Inc.

NovaVision VRT(TM) Vision Restoration Therapy(TM) (VRT) is based on groundbreaking research in neuroplasticity. VRT is an FDA-cleared, patented, non-invasive medical device that may restore vision in stroke and traumatic brain injury (TBI) patients with visual deficits. While speech, physical and occupational therapy are the long-standing, mainstream treatment regimens for stroke and TBI patients, VRT is the first FDA-cleared clinical application of rehabilitation for vision loss. NovaVision, Inc. develops and distributes VRT.

NovaVision, Inc. is headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida with European offices that include clinics and research and development in Magdeburg and Berlin, Germany. VRT is based on 15 years of research with clinical studies published in leading journals including Nature Medicine, Neurology, and The Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. Data from a recent retrospective study identified that more than 65 percent of patients who underwent VRT for an initial six-month treatment period showed measurable improvements in their vision. VRT is currently offered at: Albert Einstein Medical Center, Philadelphia, PA; Bascom Palmer Eye Institute at University of Miami, Miami, FL; Columbia University Medical Center's Neurological Institute of NY, New York, NY; Department of Neurology, University of Miami, Miami, FL; Emory Healthcare Eye Center, Atlanta, GA; Kresge Eye Institute at Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI; Richard H. Legge, M.D., Omaha, NE; and now the Rusk Institute, New York, NY. For more information about NovaVision VRT please visit www.novavisiontherapy.com or call 888.205.0800.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Jul 12, 2005
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