Back in early 2018 I began to experience some medical issues following a total knee replacement. After ten months of numerous tests, examinations and an unexplained drastic weight loss, the results were in. March 2019, I received the diagnosis of Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive, fatal neuromuscular disease that slowly robs the body of its ability to walk, speak, swallow and breathe. The life expectancy of a person with ALS averages 2 to 5 years from the time of diagnosis. ALS can strike anyone, and presently there is no known cause or cure.
In 1939 Lou Gehrig brought national and international attention to the disease. Ending the career of one of the most beloved baseball players of all time, the disease is still most closely associated with his name.
The past two years have brought incredible advancements in ALS research, expanded access to care for people living with ALS, and enabled legislation that impacts the quality of life of people with ALS and their families.
It is with the help of the ALS Association and their Greater San Diego Chapter that has helped me and my family get through this battle.
Thanks to the ALS Association Greater San Diego Chapter and its donors I have been able to utilize some of the programs and services offered. The day I was diagnosed my doctor referred me to the association. That day, I was immediately put into contact with representatives for the association. They provided me with information regarding the disease and helped us understand what to expect and how to overcome some of the hardships that we would and had encountered.
Since our initial meeting, they provided me with a wheelchair, scooter, aided me in the purchase of a wheelchair accessible van, and provided guidance and information for family members and my caretaker, Sandra.
You may be familiar with the Ice Bucket challenge back a few years ago, which brought attention to this rare disease. In San Diego there is the annual Walk to Defeat ALS. Contributions from this event allow our Greater San Diego Chapter to provide programs and services to families affected by ALS and fund global, cutting-edge research.
The Walk to Defeat ALS also raises funds to support those affected by ALS and to spread awareness of the urgency to find treatments and a cure.