Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

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Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Presented By: Jillymae Medina What is ALS? Often referred to as – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis


1
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
  • Presented By Jillymae Medina

2
What is ALS?
  • Often referred to as "Lou Gehrig's disease
  • Its a progressive neurological disease that
    affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal
    cord
  • The onset is between 40 to 70 years of age
  • Twice as many men as women are affected

3
What happens to the body in ALS?
  • For unknown reasons, motor neurons in the
    brainstem and spinal cord gradually degenerate.
  • When the motor neurons die, the ability of the
    brain to initiate and control muscle movement is
    lost

4
Early symptoms of ALS
  • Difficulty lifting the front part of the foot
    (footdrop)
  • Weakness in the leg, feet or ankles
  • Hand weakness or clumsiness
  • Slurring of speech or trouble swallowing
  • Muscle cramps and twitching in the arms,
    shoulders and tongue
  • Fatigue
  • The muscles begin to atrophy

5
  • Limbs begin to look "thinner" as muscle tissue
    atrophies.

6
What else?
  • Eventually, when the muscles in the diaphragm and
    chest wall become too weak, patients require a
    ventilator to breathe
  • Most people with ALS die from respiratory
    failure, usually 3 to 5 years after being
    diagnosed

7
Diagnosis
  • No test can provide a definitive diagnosis of ALS
  • Patient's full medical history and a neurological
    examination to assess whether symptoms are
    getting progressively worse

8
Diagnosis
  • The diagnosis of ALS is primarily based on the
    symptoms and signs the physician observes in the
    patient and a series of tests to rule out other
    diseases
  • Electromyogram
  • Nerve Conduction Study
  • MRI, CT Scans
  • Spinal Tap
  • Blood Urine Test
  • Muscle biopsy

9
Treatment
  • No cure has yet been found for ALS
  • Riluzole (Rilutek) is believed to reduce damage
    to motor neurons by decreasing the release of
    glutamate
  • Rilutek prolongs survival by several months
  • The drug also extends the time before a patient
    needs ventilation support
  • Does not reverse the damage already done to motor
    neurons, and patients taking the drug must be
    monitored for liver damage and other possible
    side effects

10
Treatment
  • A physical therapist can recommend a low impact
    excersice to maintain muscle strength and ROM
  • An occupational therapist may be able to suggest
    devices such braces, walker or wheelchair and
    ramps that make it easier for the pt to get
    around
  • A speech therapist can help teach techniques to
    make speech more clearly understood and offer
    devices to make communication easier

11
Prognosis Nursing Care
  • ALS usually leads to death within 2 to 6 years
    after diagnosis
  • This illness is devastating because the pt
    remains cognitively intact while wasting away
  • Nursing care is aimed to support the patients
    cognitive and emotional state in means of
    communication, reading, companionship and helping
    the patient and family cope with the disease
    process

12
THE END
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