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Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) (cont.)

Self-Care at Home

ALS is a slowly progressive disease causing gradual disability. Once you begin to lose muscle function, you also begin to lose the ability to care for yourself.

  • Gradually you become dependent on caregivers to take care of your bodily needs. At first, for example, you may have difficulty walking; later you will require help transferring from bed to chair or wheelchair. Eventually even the smallest movement requires assistance.
  • The medical care team may include the primary care provider, specialist physicians, physical therapist, speech and communication therapist, respiratory therapist, social worker, nutritionist, and nurses. This team will provide much help in preparing you and your family to cope with this disability.
  • Spouses and other relatives bear the major responsibility for day-to-day care.
  • Home health aides can help relieve the stress of providing this round-the-clock care. They help by bathing, dressing, transferring, and feeding you as well as providing other services that prevent complications and provide comfort.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/18/2014
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Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis »

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a disease of unknown cause characterized by slowly progressive degeneration of upper motor neurons (UMNs) and lower motor neurons (LMNs).

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