Als ( Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis ) : A Degenerative Disease That Affects The Neurons Responsible For Voluntary Muscle Control

1100 Words Feb 20th, 2016 null Page
ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) is a degenerative disease that affects the neurons responsible for voluntary muscle control. Motor neurons are responsible for movement and to cause movement need to receive electrochemical messages from the brain and spinal cord(the central nervous system). When the brain sends a message to the rest of your body telling it how to move, the message first starts in the brain. These neurons in the brain, called upper neurons, then send the message to the spinal cord’s lower neurons to be sent out to the motor neurons in the rest of the body. In patients with ALS, both of the lower and upper neurons in the central nervous system (CNS) degenerate and die, causing loss of muscle control and paralysis. These muscles begin to atrophy or waste away, due to their disuse. Voluntary muscles may also have fasciculations or twitches occur.
ALS is a difficult disease to diagnose. Because of this, a battery of tests is required to definitively determine that ALS is present. However, most ALS patients experience a gradual onset of symptoms that become more severe. The beginning symptoms could be a simple as having difficulty buttoning your shirt, grasping and object, or even experiencing changes in pitch when speaking. Most of the first symptoms are associated with the inability to control muscles effectively, and begins with weakness in limbs, often worse on one side than the other. Other early symptoms may include tripping, muscle fatigue, muscle…

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