Lou Gehrig’s Disease
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is often called Lou Gehrig’s Disease because the famous baseball player was diagnosed with ALS in the 1930s. Although it is not an extremely common disease, when people get it, it is hard to deal with. Lou Gehrig’s Disease damages the neurons in the brain and spinal cord that allow us to move. Over time, ALS causes motor neurons to shrink and disappear. This causes muscles to become small and weak, and usually results in paralysis.
In all reality half of the people with ALS live three years after they find out they have it. Living with the disease is physically difficult, but people can still think clearly, and communication can sometimes be difficult. While the disease affects the spinal cord, brain, and nerves, people can handle it for a short or long period of time. Ten percent of people will survive more than ten years.
There is no for sure cure for Lou Gehrig’s Disease. But patients can help themselves, by physical therapy. Others have said rehabilitation techniques can be helpful. Patients can learn how to put up with the weakness from the disease. And many patients have also benefited from braces and walkers.
In August 2011, researchers had a breakthrough, and discovered a common cause of ALS. They have been studying it for about twenty years. In some cases the disease is inherited. But only one of ten ALS patients has the inherited version. The researchers have now discovered an abnormality in protein degradation can cause Lou Gehrig’s Disease. The 63rd anniversary of Lou Gehrig’s death was an important day. Scientists may have found a way to prevent or treat Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Researchers have been studying gene silencing. It would stop the killer genes from reproducing. This is an important discovery because it could not only help with this disease but many others as well.
ALS is a disease that many people are unaware about. It seems like the main disease people have...