Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a disease that causes the deterioration and eventual death of motor neurons that control voluntary movement in the human body. It is more widely known by its alternate name: Lou Gehrig’s disease, after the famous baseball player from the 1920’s and 30’s. Stephen Hawking the renowned astrophysicist also suffered and eventually died from the disease. Approximately 30,000 Americans suffer from this devastating condition. Due to its effects on the nervous system, it causes weakness, disability, and eventually death. Despite this, it does not affect the neurons in the brain that control consciousness, so patients dying from the disease are fully cognizant of their deterioration. There is no known cure, but using CBD for ALS has been shown to be effective at managing the symptoms of the disorder.
What Causes ALS?
ALS has two classifications for its causes: familial and sporadic. Familial ALS is present when there is a family history of the disease, meaning that it is caused by genetic factors. Sporadic ALS occurs when there is no family history of the disease, meaning that it is largely caused by environmental factors. Researchers do not know what these environmental factors are, but they’re searching. There is some evidence to suggest that exposure to environmental toxins, tobacco use, head trauma, and excessive beta-carotene intake may be possible factors. Sporadic ALS is also referred to as isolated ALS in certain parts of the scientific literature.
Approximately 90% of ALS cases are sporadic. This means that the majority of cases have causes that are unknown or poorly understood. Familial ALS comprises the remaining 10% of cases. Most researchers define familial ALS as occurring when two or more first-degree relatives suffer from the disease. Researche