The Management of Motor Neurone Disease
Virtually nothing can be found in standard textbooks on the practical management of this fatal condition, with its devastating effect on both patients and their families. Because intellect is unimpaired, the eventual disabilities produce a loss of morale which can be helped only by careful management, both in supportive psychotherapy and in symptomatic treatment. Unless this is skilled, the inevitable frustration will lead to anxiety, depression and even hostility. Much encouragement is required, particularly in maintaining the patient’s interest in life and using whatever abilities remain to the full. In the past, many doctors have tended to neglect patients whose disease is incurable, avoiding the natural feelings of humiliating impotence with the excuse of devoting attention to more hopeful cases. Because of the progressive nature of motor neurone disease (MND), the supportive role of the health care team is of great importance but the physician must play a continuing role, since his attendance demonstrates that there remains much that can be done to help and relieve. There can be little doubt that a positive attitude, coupled with a determination to do as much as possible for the patient and family, has a worthwhile effect.
KeywordsAmyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Motor Neurone Disease Neglect Patient Glycopyrronium Bromide Anticholinesterase Drug
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