Als Is A Progressive Degeneration Of Nerve Cells That Control Muscle Movements

1424 Words Mar 1st, 2016 6 Pages
“Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a progressive degeneration of nerve cells that control muscle movements. The disease, the most common motor neuron disease among adults, became known as Lou Gehrig’s disease after the New York Yankee’s Hall of Fame first baseman. Gehrig’s career ended in 1939 because of the condition. About 30,000 patients in this country have the disease and about 5,000 are diagnosed with ALS every year.” (ALS)
History
ALS was first discovered by a neurologist from France,Jean Martin Charcot, in 1869. Other research was done prior to Charcot’s discovery, but no one was able to define the disease or cared to take a closer look at it. ALS is a neuromuscular disease that will affect both upper and lower motor neurons. The disease became a household name in 1939 due to Lou Gehrig of the New York Yankees being diagnosed with it. That is why ALS is often referred to as “Lou Gehrig’s” disease, as he was the most famous athlete to be diagnosed. It is also known as Charcot’s disease, after Jean Martin Charcot, and MND which stands for motor neuron disease. It is a motor neuron disease which causes the deterioration and eventual death of motor neurons in the body. Due to the motor neurons being damaged the nervous system struggles to communicate with the voluntary muscles throughout the body. Most people who are diagnosed with ALS only survive about 3-5 years after diagnosis, however some have survived for 10 or more…

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