What Is Lou Gehrig’s Disease?

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by Wendy Henderson |

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This video from WS Westwood explains the degenerative condition, Lou Gehrig’s disease. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease after the famous baseball player developed the condition and died from complications associated with ALS in 1941.

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The film explains that approximately 5,600 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with ALS each year and up to 30,000 people could be living with the disease at any time. Researchers are yet to discover a cause for ALS and it often strikes in people who were previously healthy and strong.

ALS is typically diagnosed between the ages of 40 and 70, with 55 being the average age of diagnosis, although it can strike people in their 30s and very rarely in their 20s.

Muscle stiffness, weakness in the arms and legs, cramping, twitching, difficulty swallowing or chewing and slurred speech are all common early symptoms of the disease.

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