What is ALS?
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as "Lou Gehrig's Disease," is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord.
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that primarily affects the motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord. This condition was first described by the French neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot in the 19th century and has since become a widely recognized and studied disease.
ALS is characterized by the progressive degeneration and death of motor neurons. These specialized nerve cells are responsible for transmitting signals from the brain and spinal cord to the muscles throughout the body. As ALS advances, motor neurons lose their ability to function and eventually die. As a result, individuals with ALS experience muscle weakness, atrophy (shrinking), and a loss of motor control.
Individuals with ALS may experience cognitive and behavioral changes, including frontotemporal dementia (FTD). FTD can lead to alterations in personality, decision-making, and social behavior, though not all ALS patients develop these symptoms.
Unfortunately, there is no cure for ALS. The exact cause of the disease remains unclear, although some cases are linked to genetic mutations. While there is no cure, there are therapies and treatments available to manage symptoms and improve quality of life.
ALS is a challenging condition that not only affects the physical abilities of those diagnosed but also has a significant emotional and psychological impact on individuals and their loved ones. Despite the absence of a cure, ongoing research and efforts within the medical community continue to improve our understanding of the disease and provide hope for better treatments in the future.
people are diagnosed per year
is the average life expectancy
of cases are inherited through a mutated gene