Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) (cont.)
Right now, no cure is available for ALS. It results in the death of affected patients. Most people with ALS die within five years of the first symptoms, although a few people have lived as long as 10 years. Most people with ALS die of respiratory failure or infections related to respiratory disability.
If you have ALS, you should take the opportunity to express your wishes about medical care, estate planning, and personal issues while you are still able.
- Preferences concerning medical care at the end of life should be clarified early and documented in your medical chart. Your spouse and other close family members should understand your wishes. Early clarification of these wishes prevents conflicts later when you are not able to speak for yourself.
- You should consult a lawyer as early as possible. Personal affairs should be settled. Later in the disease, you may not be able to sign papers or even communicate your wishes.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/18/2014
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