Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a progressive, neurodegenerative life-limiting disease. ALS is a disease that weakens an individual’s muscles and impacts physical function such as walking, dressing, writing, speaking and breathing.
According to the ALS Association, a little over 5,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with ALS each year and it is estimated that there are at least 16,000 people who have the disease at a given time.
Unfortunately, there is no cure for ALS. Half of the individuals who are diagnosed with ALS live three or more years after diagnosis; 20 percent live for five years or more; up to 10 percent live more than 10 years.
During the ALS journey, especially during the end stage of ALS, there can be significant costs associated with ALS and the healthcare that is needed including medical care, equipment, medical staff visitation and more. Read on to learn more about how WV Caring, West Virginia’s leading hospice care provider, can help you talk through ALS, what we can do for you and to hear from an ALS patient’s family about hospice.