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Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: New Perpectives and Update

Marco Orsini
Acary Bulle Oliveira
Osvaldo J.M. Nascimento
Carlos Henrique Melo Reis
Marco Antonio Araujo Leite
Jano Alves de Souza
Camila Pupe
Olivia Gameiro de Souza
Victor Hugo Bastos
Marcos R.G. de Freitas
Silmar Teixeira
Carlos Bruno
Eduardo Davidovich
1 and
Benny Smidt
Neurology Department, Universidade Federal Fluminense, Rio de Janeiro
Programa de Mestrado em Ciências da Reabiitação – UNISUAM, Rio de Janeiro
Neurology Department, Universidade Federal de São Paulo – UNIFESP, São Paulo
Neuroscience Department, Universidade Federal do Piaiu, Parnaiba, Brazil
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Neurol. Int. 2015, 7(2), 5885;
Submission received: 25 February 2015 / Revised: 25 February 2015 / Accepted: 15 June 2015 / Published: 24 September 2015


Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Charcot’s disease or Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a term used to cover the spetrum of syndromes caracterized by progressive degeneration of motor neurons, a paralytic disorder caused by motor neuron degeneration. Currently, there are approximately 25,000 patients with ALS in the USA, with an average age of onset of 55 years. The incidence and prevalence of ALS are 1-2 and 4-6 per 100,000 each year, respectively, with a lifetime ALS risk of 1/600 to 1/1000. It causes progressive and cumulative physical disabilities, and leads to eventual death due to respiratory muscle failure. ALS is diverse in its presentation, course, and progression. We do not yet fully understand the causes of the disease, nor the mechanisms for its progression; thus, we lack effective means for treating this disease. In this chapter, we will discuss the diagnosis, treatment, and how to cope with impaired function and end of life based on of our experience, guidelines, and clinical trials. Nowadays ALS seems to be a more complex disease than it did two decades – or even one decade – ago, but new insights have been plentiful. Clinical trials should be seen more as experiments on pathogenic mechanisms. A medication or combination of medications that targets more than one pathogenic pathway may slow disease progression in an additive or synergistic fashion.
Keywords: amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; neurodegenerative diseases; diagnosis; treatment; rehabilitation amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; neurodegenerative diseases; diagnosis; treatment; rehabilitation

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MDPI and ACS Style

Orsini, M.; Oliveira, A.B.; Nascimento, O.J.M.; Reis, C.H.M.; Leite, M.A.A.; de Souza, J.A.; Pupe, C.; de Souza, O.G.; Bastos, V.H.; de Freitas, M.R.G.; et al. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: New Perpectives and Update. Neurol. Int. 2015, 7, 5885.

AMA Style

Orsini M, Oliveira AB, Nascimento OJM, Reis CHM, Leite MAA, de Souza JA, Pupe C, de Souza OG, Bastos VH, de Freitas MRG, et al. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: New Perpectives and Update. Neurology International. 2015; 7(2):5885.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Orsini, Marco, Acary Bulle Oliveira, Osvaldo J.M. Nascimento, Carlos Henrique Melo Reis, Marco Antonio Araujo Leite, Jano Alves de Souza, Camila Pupe, Olivia Gameiro de Souza, Victor Hugo Bastos, Marcos R.G. de Freitas, and et al. 2015. "Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: New Perpectives and Update" Neurology International 7, no. 2: 5885.

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