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What is the difference between ALS and PLS?

By: Helder OliveiraUpdated: May 01, 2021

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PLS affects the upper motor neurons alone, while ALS affects the upper and lower motor neurons. In PLS, there is no evi- dence of the degeneration of spinal motor neurons that occurs in ALS. The progress of PLS is more gradual and less devastating than that of ALS.

Then, what are the symptoms of PLS?

Symptoms include weakness, muscle stiffness and spasticity, clumsiness, slowing of movement, and problems with balance and speech. PLS is more common in men than in women, with a varied gradual onset that generally occurs between ages 40 and 60. PLS progresses gradually over a number of years, or even decades.

Additionally, is there a cure for PLS?

There is no cure and the progression of symptoms varies. Some people may retain the ability to walk without assistance, but others eventually require wheelchairs, canes, or other assistive devices. PLS is not fatal. There is no cure and the progression of symptoms varies.

How often does pls turn into ALS?

In another study reviewing charts of 29 patients whose initial presentation in an ALS clinic was consistent with PLS, Gordon and colleagues found that 13 patients subsequently developed an upper motor neuron predominant form of ALS, most within four years after onset of symptoms.

How long can you live with pls?

Although the average progression of primary lateral sclerosis (PLS) lasts around 20 years, the disease has highly variable effects from person to person. Some people continue to walk, but others eventually need to use wheelchairs or other assistive devices.

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What causes pls?

PLS is caused primarily by degeneration of the upper motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord, which results in increasing spasticity and weakness of voluntary muscles. It is often referred to as a benign variant of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, Lou Gehrig's disease).

How fast does pls progress?

Although the average progression of primary lateral sclerosis (PLS) lasts around 20 years, the disease has highly variable effects from person to person. Some people continue to walk, but others eventually need to use wheelchairs or other assistive devices.

Does primary lateral sclerosis cause pain?

Primary lateral sclerosis (PLS) is a rare, neuromuscular disorder that affects the central motor neurons and is characterized by painless but progressive weakness and stiffness of the muscles of the legs. In most cases, the disorder affects adults during midlife. The exact cause of primary lateral sclerosis is unknown.

Is pls a disability?

It is a motor neuron disease, with similarities to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), but usually not as severe. Unlike ALS, the prognosis in PLS is less grim, even though PLS is a progressive disorder. Patients diagnosed with PLS may live for decades, but with gradually worsening disability.

Does PLS affect breathing?

Stiffness, weakness and muscle spasms (spasticity) in your legs, often starting in one leg. Hoarseness, as well as slowed, slurred speech and drooling as the facial muscles weaken. Difficulties with swallowing and occasionally breathing late in the disease.

Is Pls an autoimmune disease?

Primary lateral sclerosis (PLS) is a very rare neuromuscular disease characterized by progressive muscle weakness in the voluntary muscles. PLS belongs to a group of disorders known as motor neuron diseases.

Primary lateral sclerosis
Specialty Neurology

How common is pls?

Primary lateral sclerosis (PLS) is a rare neuromuscular disease with slowly progressive weakness in voluntary muscle movement. PLS belongs to a group of disorders known as motor neuron diseases. PLS is more common in men than in women, with a varied gradual onset that generally occurs between ages 40 and 60.

Can pls progress to ALS?

ALS may begin with signs of only upper or lower motor neuron involvement, so a process that begins with upper motor neuron degeneration and that initially is considered to be PLS has the potential to be reclassified as ALS if suffi- cient signs of both upper and lower motor neuron involvement develop over time.

How rare is primary lateral sclerosis?

Affected Populations
Primary lateral sclerosis is a rare disorder that affects males and females in equal numbers. In most cases, the disorder occurs during the fifth decade. However, according to the medical literature a familial form may exist that affects children.

Is pls disease genetic?

Scientists do not believe PLS has a simple hereditary cause. The diagnosis of PLS requires extensive testing to exclude other diseases. When symptoms begin, PLS may be mistaken for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or spastic paraplegia.

What is PLS disease?

Primary lateral sclerosis (PLS) is a rare neuromuscular disease with slowly progressive weakness in voluntary muscle movement. PLS belongs to a group of disorders known as motor neuron diseases. PLS affects the upper motor neurons (also called corticospinal neurons) in the arms, legs, and face.

What is PLS test?

The PLS-5 was designed to assess receptive and expressive language abilities in children aged 0-7;11 in order to determine the presence of a language delay or disorder. The test consists of an auditory comprehension scale and expressive communication scale to evaluate specific areas of strength and weakness.

What are three types of ALS?

There are two types of ALS:
  • Sporadic ALS is the most common form. It affects up to 95% of people with the disease. Sporadic means it happens sometimes without a clear cause.
  • Familial ALS (FALS) runs in families. About 5% to 10% of people with ALS have this type. FALS is caused by changes to a gene.