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21.09.2005:
   21.09.2005

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EXPERIENCE OF AMINO ACID COMPOUND TREATMENT IN AMYOTROPHIC LATERAL SCLEROSIS (ALS).

N.A. Roschina, Cand. Sc. (Med.), Asst. Prof.
1997

INTRODUCTION

At present, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is defined as a variety of the motor neuron disease (1). The incidence of this fatal illness accounts for 1-8 per 100,000 inhabitants (2).

Modern neurology does not have a conclusive concept of the genesis of atrophic alterations of the spinal cord motor cortex, trunk and segmental apparatus verifiable by MRT. This is why all the therapeutic ALS treatment patterns (neuropeptides, antiviral preparations, immunosuppression, plasmapheresis, etc.) failed (3).

MATERIAL AND STUDY METHODS

In 1994-1996, we have been observing 16 patients among whom females aged 50-60 prevailed (10 subjects). The ALS diagnosis was verified in all patients by EMG and in 5 patients by MRT.

The clinical picture of the illness depended on the dominating central or peripheral motoneuron lesion while the severity degree was determined by the bulbar-pseudobulbar syndrome and motor disorders. 8 patients were 1st degree and 8 others 2nd degree invalids.

The previous (standard) therapy proved ineffective in all the patients.

In a given stage all the sufferers were administered amino acid compounds: Glucaprim, Primavit, Neurovit and Neoprim. The average daily dosage of the above preparations varied between 250 and 1,000 mg. The course of treatment lasted 1-4 months.

STUDY RESULTS

The selective efficacy of the amino acid drugs used to treat ALS manifestations is presented in Tab. 1.

Table 1

DRUG

SYMPTOM

GLUCAPRIM

PRIMAVIT

NEUROVIT

NEOPRIM

 

Spasticity

Bulbar syndrome

Pseudobulbar syndrome

Breath disturbances

Pareses and paralyses

Salivation

Pelvic disorders

+

+
+

+
+

+

+

+

+

+
+
+
+

The treatment results were identified in all the patients in the same sequence.

Breath disturbances decreased and swallowing improved on the 3rd-4th day. By the 7th-10th day, the amount of movements and strength in paretic limbs increased, the spasticity level decreased and salivation diminished.

From the 10th-14th day on, fibrillations decreased, motor activity grew and possibilities of self-help expanded.

By the end of a 6-week course, the muscular mass increased which was objectively recorded by weighing (+3.5 kg); the condition of patients as well as their sleep, appetite and mood improved.

CONCLUSION

Thus, the first experience of treating ALS with amino acid compounds allows the following conclusions:

Administration of amino acids is indicated in all the ALS patients, irrespective of the severity of their condition.

Amino acid compounds increase patients' motor performance by decreasing the severity of breath disorders and of the bulbar-pseudobulbar syndrome.

Neurovit and Neoprim proved the most effective in ALS patients.

Prolonged amino acid intake is well tolerated by patients and does not produce side effects.

REFERENCES:

Manual Nervous System Diseases, vol. 2, p. 218, Moscow, Meditsina, 1995 (in Russian).

Khondkarian, O.A.; Bunina, T.L.; Zavalishin, I.A. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, p. 47, Meditsina, Moscow, 1978 (in Russian).

Merritt's Textbook of Neurology, London, 1989, p. 683 (in English).


 
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