What type of dysarthria is associated with ALS?
ALS patients usually have a mixed dysarthria (spastic-flaccid). It is characterized by defective articulation, slow laborious speech, imprecise consonant production, marked hypernasality with nasal emission of air during speech and harshness.
What percentage of ALS patients have dysphagia?
About one-third of ALS patients show a bulbar onset with dysphagia and dysarthria. Yet, independent of the clinical onset, dysphagia emerges in more than 80% of patients during the advanced phases of the disease (3).
How long does VitalStim last?
Why every 3 years? Yes, once a therapist passes the training program, they are VitalStim Providers and remain so. As part of the national accreditation of the VitalStim Therapy Specialty Program, a 3 year renewal was implemented to meet NCCA standards.
How does ALS cause dysphagia?
Around 85 percent of people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) — a progressive neurological condition that affects motor neurons, the nerve cells that control muscle movements —experience dysphagia, or difficulties in swallowing. These problems usually occur in the later stages of the disease.
Can ALS cause flaccid dysarthria?
Regardless of the site of onset, most patients with ALS will experience bulbar motor deterioration that will lead to a dysarthria. According to Darley’s classification of dysarthrias, dysarthria in ALS is grossly described as “mixed” (both spastic, due the UMN deterioration, and flaccid, due to the LMN deterioration).
Does ALS cause hoarseness?
Typically, the voice problems caused by ALS involve increased muscle tension (spasticity) of the vocal folds that causes the voice to sound strained and tight. It usually begins with a hoarse or raspy quality to the voice that progresses slowly and continuously to a more strained voice quality.
What stages of swallowing are affected by ALS?
Results: Results revealed that patients with ALS exhibit difficulties in oral preparatory, oral and pharyngeal stages of swallowing. Inability to hold bolus, reduced mastication, residue in the oral cavity and nasal regurgitation while swallow were observed due to the affected oromotor functions.
What is the most common cause of death in ALS patients related to acute respiratory failure?
As the disease worsens, patients eventually lose control of the respiratory muscles, including the diaphragm, which allow the chest to move, causing severe respiratory complications, the most common cause of death for ALS patients.
What is VitalStim therapy?
VitalStim Therapy is a non-invasive therapy that uses an electrical current to stimulate the muscles responsible for swallowing. It is the only FDA-cleared device for treatment of dysphagia (swallowing difficulty).
What does ALS dysphagia feel like?
People with ALS may experience 1) swallowing difficulty due to the weakness and/or rigidity of the swallowing muscles and 2) difficulties with protecting the airway during swallowing.
How fast is ALS progression?
In general, the ALSFRS and FVC scores decrease by about 20% per year. If the decline in ALSFRS is more than 0.5 points per month, progression may be faster than average. Breathing declining at more than 3% per month also suggests a faster rate of progression.