Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Functional Rating Scale

  • Michelle Marie Tipton-BurtonEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_1927




The Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Functional Rating Scale (ALSFRS) is a validated instrument designed to assess the functional status and the disease progression in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). It is a tool that can be used to monitor functional change in a patient over time. The ALSFRS is a ten-item functional inventory which was devised for use in therapeutic trials in ALS. Each item is rated on a 0–4 scale, (with 0 being severely impaired and 4 being normal) by the patient and/or caregiver, yielding a maximum score of 40 points. The ALSFRS assesses the patients’ levels of self-sufficiency in areas of self-feeding, grooming, ambulation, and communication and swallowing. Versions are available in Spanish, Dutch, and German.

Historical Background

The ALSFRS was developed because clinimetric scales being utilized at the time were contaminated with impairment measurements, did not measure the broad range of disabilities that...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Further Reading

  1. ALS CNTF Treatment Study (ACTS) Phase 1-11 Study Group. (1996). The amyotrophic lateral sclerosis functional rating scale. Assessment of activities of daily living in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Archives of Neurology, 53, 141–147.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Campos, T. S., Rodriquez-Santos, F., Esteban, J., Vasquez, P. C., Mora Paradivia, J. S., & Carmona, A. C. (2010). Spanish adaption of the revised amyotrophic lateral sclerosis functional rating scale (ALSFRS-R). Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, 11(5), 475–477.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Cedarbaum, J. M., & Stambler, N. (1997). Performance of the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis functional rating scale (ALSFRS) in multicenter clinical trials. Journal of the Neurological Sciences, 152(Suppl 1), S1–S9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Feinstein, A. R. (1987) Clinimetric perspectives. Journal of Chronic Diseases, 40(6), 635–40.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Herndon, R. M. (2006). Handbook of neurologic rating scales (p. 96). New York: Demos Medical Publishing, LLC.Google Scholar
  6. Lo Coco, D., Marchese, S., La Bella, V., Piccoli, T., & Lo Coco, A. (2007). The amyotrophic lateral sclerosis functional rating scale predicts survival time in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis patients on invasive mechanical ventilation. Chest, 132(1), 64–69.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Streiner, D. L. & Norman, G. R. (1989). A Review of: “Health Measurement Scales: A Practical Guide to Their Development and Use, Fourth Edition” New York: Oxford University Press, 2008, ISBM 978-0-19-923188-1, xvii + 431 ppGoogle Scholar
  8. Wicks, P., Massagli, M. P., Wolf, C., & Heywood, J. (2009). Measuring function in Advaced ALS: Validation of ALSFRS-Ex extension items. European Journal of Neurology, 16(3), 353–359.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-1331.2008.02434.x.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Physical Medicine and RehabilitationSanta Clara Valley Medical CenterSan JoseUSA