Risk Factors in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

  • Kazushi OkamotoEmail author
Part of the Current Topics in Environmental Health and Preventive Medicine book series (CTEHPM)


Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a devastating and lethal adult-onset degenerative disease of the upper and lower motor neuron systems. It is of unknown etiology and affects the motor neurons in the spinal cord, leading to atrophy of the skeletal muscles, paralysis, and death within 2–5 years of symptom onset, often due to respiratory insufficiency. High incidence areas are located approximately on the 135 east longitude. Most cases of ALS are sporadic, with only 5–10% having a family history, suggesting that nongenetic factors have a greater effect on the development of ALS than genetic factors.

In this review, we introduce the major factors related to the development of ALS and provide data on gender and age group differences for the risk factors listed.


Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis Risk factors Lifestyle Environment Medical condition 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Public Health and EpidemiologyAichi Prefectural College School of Nursing and HealthNagoyaJapan

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