, Volume 12, Issue 3, pp 239-245
Date: 31 Mar 2010

Psychiatric Aspects of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

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Abstract

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive disorder characterized by degeneration of motor neurons. Given the severe nature of ALS, many believed that patients would suffer from a high level of depression and a low quality of life. However, research into the psychological health of patients with ALS has shown that this is not the case. This article reviews the state of current knowledge as it pertains to the psychological health of ALS patients in four broad areas: quality of life, personality characteristics, emotional reactions, and end-of-life choices.