Als

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Als

  1. 1. Lou Gehrig’s Disease is formally known as  amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The disease was named after Lou Gehrig, the famous baseball player who died of it in 1941. People with ALS have normal abilities to think  and their memories work fine, but their bodies do not respond to commands from their brain to move.
  2. 2. ALS occurs when neurons in the brain’s  motor cortex and in the spinal cord die. The neurons that die are responsible for controlling voluntary muscles and the ability to move. The person will become weak and paralyzed. There is probably a genetic link because this disease runs in families.
  3. 3. It is difficult to diagnose ALS because the symptoms are  similar to those of other neuromuscular disorders, many of which are treatable. The diagnosis is usually based on a complete neurological examination and clinical tests. If a person has ALS, the neurological examination would usually show evidence of muscle weakness (either in small areas or in more widespread areas, depending on how far advanced the ALS is). The also would also would reveal if there is muscle atrophy (wasting or loss of muscle tissue resulting from disease or lack of use). The muscles may also be so stiff when the doctor moves them that they continue to move in abnormal ways afterwards. When the doctor checks the “knee jerk” reaction, the movement of the leg is much quicker than in normal patients. Because ALS affects voluntary muscles, the exam usually does not reveal any differences from normal in the sense (vision, hearing, taste, smell, and touch).
  4. 4. Stephen Hawking is a famous theoretical physicist who has ALS
  5. 5. There are several drugs to treat the symptoms of  ALS, but there is no cure. The cause is also still unknown. There is some research to suggest a virus may be involved.

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