Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

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Last updated 6 years ago

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Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

Roughly 20,000-30,000 people are affected with ALS in the US, with 5,000 cases newly diagnosed yearly.

Although ALS doesn't directly affect one's brain, depression may occur, along with troubled decision making.

Subtle pre-mature symptoms are frequently overlooked such as twitching, cramping, stiffness, slurred speech, and difficulty chewing.

No single test can be perfromed to diagnose ALS. Several tests are used such as urine tests, blood tests, MRI, and muscle biopsy.

No cure has been found yet; however, Riluzole is prescribed to reduce the rapid progression.

ALS most commonly affects people between the ages of 40-60 years old.

The average life expectancy for one affected is 2-5 years; however, it is gradually growing.

ALS occurs throughout the world with no racial, ethnic, or socioeconomic boundaries.

The most common cause of death for people with ALS is respiratory failure.

Malnutrition and dehydration often occur because of the loss of muscle use in the throat.

Lou Gehrig, a baseball star, was diagnosed with ALS in 1939

The cause of ALS is still unknown.

In the US, ALS and motor neuron disease are used interchangeablely.

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

ALS is a rapidly progressive and fatal neurological disease that attacks the nerves of involuntary muscles.

90-95% of all ALS cases appear randomly with no associated risk factors. 5-10% of cases appear to be inherited.

When one contracts ALS, the motor neurons die, which send the signals from the brain to the spinal cord.The signal is then transferred into messages sent to muscles.

ALS can affect anyone at anytime.

It is possible that the ALS gene is triggered by certain environmental factors.

Symptoms and ways affected vary from person to person. However, in every case, the patient eventually can't stand, get out of bed, or use their hands or arms.


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