Ice Buckets Aside, Local Neurologist Says ALS Advances Are Being Made

Published: Monday, August 18, 2014 - 11:43am

It’s been known as Lou Gehrig’s disease since it took the Yankees baseball star’s life in 1941, but Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, ALS is getting a lot of publicity these days from what’s known as the Ice Bucket challenge. 

The challenge, where people take a video of themselves pouring a bucket of ice water on their heads post it on social media, and challenge others to do it or donate $100, has raised millions for ALS research.

One of the institutions studying the disease is Barrow Neurological and Dr. Shafeeq Ladha said while there is still no cure, advances are being made.

“There’s one FDA-approved drug that marginally helps slow the disease down.  Other than that all of our other treatments really relate to quality of life measures, so trying to make patients days better than they would have been otherwise," Ladha said.

Ladha said the truth may be that the lack of a cure for ALS is related to the much larger number of research dollars spent on finding the answers to other diseases, like cancer.

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