New Braunfels, TX, August 02, 2008 --(PR.com
)-- The ALS Association and Hope Hospice are working together to offer the best care possible to ALS patients and their families. As experts in end-of-life care, the Hope Hospice clinical team must continually maintain their education on the symptoms and characteristics of many diseases, including ALS, also commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease.
Representatives of the ALS Association South Texas Chapter and the ALS Association Certified Clinic visited with Hope Hospice staff this morning and shared their expertise on ALS symptoms and symptom management. Stephen Morse, Patient Services Coordinator for the ALS Association South Texas Chapter, presented the Hope Hospice staff with an overview of ALS. Morse explained that ALS causes the brain to stop communicating with motor neutrons, resulting in loss of voluntary muscle movement and eventual paralysis. The age of onset for ALS is most commonly between 40 and 70, and occurs slightly more often with males than with females. The ALS Association has also recently noted a 60% greater risk for ALS among soldiers; further research is being conducted into this phenomenon.
Lisa Jackson of Walgreens Home Care and the ALS Association Certified Clinic is a Registered Respiratory Therapist who works with ALS patients on keeping their respiratory symptoms under control. As the disease progresses, it can become increasingly difficult for ALS patients to breathe without some kind of learned technique or assistance. Jackson specifically addressed Hope Hospice’s clinical staff as she explained the therapeutic methods she has found to be most effective with ALS patients as well as what kind of education the ALSA offers its patients and their families. Syndi Hudson, RN, Admissions Nurse with Hope Hospice, said afterward, “It was really helpful to hear from the ALS Association so we can know the care setting our ALS patients have come from and their orientation to end-of-life care.”
Although many patients can live for years with ALS, it has no known cure and as the disease progresses it can begin to severely diminish their life expectancy. Hope Hospice cares for many ALS patients, and in an effort to continually strive for excellence, its clinical team aims to become experts on the unique aspects of life with ALS and ALS symptom management.