Archive | 4:39 PM

Legit Journal Sources for ALS

1 Nov

Sorry about the gap, people.  And ending it with school-work.  My mofo Anatomy prof scheduled an exam on November 1 at 8AM.  Who DOES that?!  Oh, AND tacked on an entire chapter the class before the exam.  All pathologies–forcing me to cram that info into my short-term memory only to regurgitate (dysphagia pun intended) it for the exam and forget it later.  Why does academia HATE Halloween?  I hated having to study on one of the best holidays. . .  I hhave a mind to watch a horror movie tonight to make up for it.

Anyway, on with my homework:  I found three suitable (and fully available) peer-reviewed journal articles.  And boy, was I glad I had done some of the leg work over the summer.  I just took the references I had typed up into the library and looked until I found 3 live copies that were on my list.

But now, I hold pages and pages of dry and confusing info–only some of it helpful for my anatomy paper.  The hard part–other then understanding what I’m reading–is figuring out which parts to keep and which to discard.  What info is important?  This is what I need to parse out of these jargon-y research articles.

I have a hankering to highlight upon the copies.  BUT these journals were relatively hard to get my hands on and tedious to copy (and later scan into the computer) so I don’t want to mar them in any way.  Instead, I’ll try to start by typing the main points in a sort of outline form.  Then I can see all in one place what I have, and sort of shape MY paper from there.

A:  New England Journal of Medicine

1.  Contains good background info and definitions:

-progressive degeneration of both upper and lower motor nerons.

2.  Talks about how it’s difficult to diagnose and differentiate ALS from other motor neuron syndromes.

3.  Discuss possible causation


-gene mutations

-chromosomal location (bunch of letters and #) tied to Parkinsons?


–high incidence in Guam

–heavy metals


–prion dz


4.  Features of ALS:

(lots of jargon, language, tests, and sci I don’t understand)

5.  Therapy:


-ventilation considerations (*ties to resp section of anatomy)

-tx depression

-gene and stem cell therapy–>

-advances in genetics has accelerated ALS research looking for a cure.

6.  End of life issues


B:  American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

1.  More specific dz defining info w/symptoms

2.  Gives info on sample for study on nutrition in ALS patients.

3.  Tells what is measured and how.

3.5 each patient kept food journal for 3 days of regular diet.

4.  Tells how energy expenditure was measured.

5.  Blood panel was taken–says what components looked at.

6.  Tells how pulmonary function evaluated

7.  Results (full of stat and jargon, but *highly related to our anatomy systems.)

8.  Discussion (still full of jargon, but less stats and puts together experiement and the results, that would be useful for our paper/presentation.


C:  Dysphagia

1.  Tells they studied early dysphagia in their experiment.

-who was in sample

-how measured


2.  Very specific methods used to study dysphagia.  (jargony and boring, but mentions a *ton of anatomy and structures relevant to us).



3.  Results (very technical, but includes good graphs and pics)

4.  Discussion

-interesting ALS stats

Tells specifically how ALS impacts swallowing.