Rinsho Shinkeigaku (Clinical Neurology)

Symposium 4

Clinical feature of ALS with communication disturbance; the possibility to communication in TLS

Masahiro Nagao, M.D., Ph.D.1)

1)Department of Neurology, Tokyo Metropolitan Neurological Hospital

In the subsets of amyotrohic lateral sclerosis (ALS), totally-locked in state (TLS) is shown as the result of marked progression of motor neuron degeneration. In TLS, patients are impossible to move any voluntary muscles. As the result, patients with TLS cannot communicate with any augmentative and alternative communication devices(AACD) at present. To find the AACD that enables for TLS to communicate, we examined the clinical character, brain MRI, SPECT and evoked potentials in TLS. Brain MRI showed marked brain atrophy including the brainstem, but the occipital lobe was spared. SPECT and visual evoked potentials (VEP) showed preserved physiological function of the occipital lobe in TLS. The results suggest that neuronal degeneration in TLS is not restricted to motor system, but that the visual pathways are spared. Patients with TLS may be possible to use AACD that utilize the visual pathway.
Full Text of this Article in Japanese PDF (835K)

(CLINICA NEUROL, 53: 1393|1395, 2013)
key words: amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, totally locked-in state, respirator, communication, brain machine interface

(Received: 1-Jun-13)