Amyotrophic Lateral SclerosisUnderstanding and Optimizing Quality of Life and Psychological Well-Being

Amyotrophic Lateral SclerosisUnderstanding and Optimizing Quality of Life and Psychological Well-Being

Francesco Pagnini and Zachary Simmons

Print publication date: Feb 2018

ISBN: 9780198757726

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Abstract

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: Understanding and optimizing quality of life and psychological well-being presents a comprehensive and up-to-date review of the enhancement of the lives of people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and their caregivers. ALS is a progressive, fatal neurodegenerative disorder. No current medical therapy can reverse or stop its progression, and the promotion of quality of life and psychological well-being is a central component of ALS care. Health care professionals who work in this field should incorporate attention to psychological, emotional, and relational aspects of the disease into their approach to care. This book provides some of the knowledge and direction necessary for optimizing the quality of care for individuals with ALS and their caregivers. Topics discussed include an ALS-centred view of quality of life, depressive features, anxiety, resilience, cognitive impairment, complementary and alternative medicines, and psychological research. Specific elements of ALS, such as end-of-life concerns and bulbar dysfunction, are described through the lens of their psychological impact. There is extensive discussion of the development of new psychological treatments, as well as the impact and incorporation of new technologies, with the goal of fostering optimal quality of life and psychological well-being as key parts of a holistic approach to care for the patients and for those who are close to such individuals.