MDA/ALS Newsmagazine Vol. 17, No. 1

January-March 2012

Cover Story

For Pat Dwyer, this newly approved respiratory assist device means 'a life better lived,' but physicians urge caution until more is known
Pat Dwyer of Kenmore, Wash., uses three different devices to make sure he’s getting enough air. A “sip-and-puff” ventilator supplements his breathing efforts during the day; bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP) helps him breathe at night; and the NeuRx Diaphragm Pacing System, or DPS,...

Features

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the NeuRx Diaphragm Pacing System as a humanitarian use device (HUD), a designation given to medical devices intended for use in rare diseases. For HUD approval, the FDA requires sufficient evidence the device does not pose “an unreasonable or signif...
One of the first things that comes with a diagnosis of ALS is the determination of which “form” a person has: familial or sporadic. Sometimes it appears obvious. If there’s a known history of the disease “running in the family,” then the person is said to have familial, or inherited, ALS. If the dis...
Fight smart, not just hard. That’s the motto of Richard Bedlack, a world-renowned ALS research warrior who directs the ALS Clinic at Duke University, Durham, N.C. “Everyone I’ve ever met who is affected by ALS wants to roll up their sleeves and do something about it,” he says. Now individuals with A...

Research Roundup

Dexpramipexole shows efficacy in ALS Newly published data confirm that in a two-part phase 2 clinical trial, the experimental therapy dexpramipexole showed dose-related slowing of symptom progression and increased survival time in people with ALS. The new findings were published online Nov. 20,...

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