ALS registry announced to track information

Dec 21, 2010

Information is being collected in a database to help fight ALS.

Diseases like Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis can make it more difficult to secure a life insurance policy.

However, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry recently announced it has launched a national registry to help track information about ALS. The condition is more commonly know as Lou Gehrig's disease.

The information gathered through the National ALS Registry will help researchers track common risk factors, including those tied to family histories or environmental conditions.

"Today, the cause or causes of ALS are largely unknown; this is the first nation-wide registry created to enhance our knowledge about this disease," ATSDR director Dr. Christopher Portier said.

The entries in the registry will include an individual's personal medical and family histories, along with work experience.

An estimated 30,000 people in the U.S. have the disease. The condition causes nerve cells to cease functioning and eventually die. It can cause paralysis, muscle weakness and death.

Given that it may be a fatal condition, those who may be at risk for ALS could consider life insurance, which will provide for their families should they succumb to the disease.

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