Arizona State University College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Chicana and Chicano StudiesLatino Health Issues

ALS Awareness for Latinos

Who Is Affected by ALS?

What is ALS?
Symptoms of ALS
Treatments for ALS
Links to ALS Sites
ELA Referencias en Espanol

Approximately 5,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with ALS each year, but this means that only two out of every 100,000 people will get this disease. ALS is one of the most common diseases affecting the nerves and muscles worldwide, and people of all races and ethnic backgrounds are affected. ALS most commonly strikes people between 40 and 60 years of age, but younger and older people also can develop the disease. Men are affected more often than women. In almost all ALS cases, the disease occurs at random. Research shows that the disease is not contagious, meaning that you cannot acquire the disease from being around someone with the disease. In these cases, patients do not have a family history of the disease, and their family members are not considered to be at increased risk for developing ALS. On the other hand, 5 to 10 percent of all ALS cases are inherited. This form of ALS is called familial, and requires only one parent to carry the gene responsible for the disease. (5)


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This site was created by Brent Clouse in fulfillment of requirements for the course CSS 335: Latino Health Issues taught by Dr. Szkupinski Quiroga at Arizona State University, Spring 2004.