2. Loss of Strength
ALS belongs to, and is perhaps the most common example of, a group of neurological disorders known as Motor Neuron Diseases. These diseases affect the body by causing the death of millions of neurons found in the motor cortex of the brain as well as the spinal cord. These nerve cells are directly responsible for the regulation and control of skeletal muscle function.
As such, patients who have ALS eventually lose the ability to control all voluntary movement. During the progression of the disease, which typically lasts for several years, patients will experience a cumulative loss of muscle strength.
In most cases, the first muscles affected by the disease are those of the arms and legs which results in patients experiencing awkwardness when walking or moving about, an increased propensity for stumbling or tripping, and difficulty performing everyday tasks that require dexterity, such as tying shoelaces or typing on a keyboard.