Cutler Legislation Aims to Raise Awareness of ALS
4/22/2013
Advocates for ALS awareness visited Harrisburg today to talk about the devastating impact of the disease and the need to find a cure. Rep. Bryan Cutler (R-Peach Bottom), who has been a long-time supporter of ALS awareness, spoke at the event in the Capitol Rotunda.
HARRISBURG –
The House of Representatives today unanimously approved legislation authored by Rep. Bryan Cutler (R-Peach Bottom) to raise awareness of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), commonly referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease, by designating May as ALS Awareness Month in Pennsylvania.

“ALS is a tragic disease that progressively robs a person of his or her ability to move, breathe and speak,” said Cutler.  “I watched both of my parents battle and eventually succumb to the disease.  Along with this very heartbreaking personal experience, I also view this as a public health issue.  Military veterans are twice as likely as non-veterans to develop ALS.  There is also a great cost to managing the disease, which often forces patients to apply for Medicaid when their own resources are expended.”

Cutler’s House Resolution 209 explains the devastating impact of the disease, which most commonly occurs in adults between the ages of 40-70.  Men are more likely to be diagnosed with ALS than women. 

Approximately 5,600 new ALS patients are diagnosed each year.  Most individuals diagnosed survive for only two to five years. 

ALS attacks nerve cells and pathways in the brain and spinal cord, taking away an individual’s mobility and voluntary muscle control.  Scientists still do not know what causes the disease and there is no known cure or means of prevention.  To date, there is only one Food and Drug Administration approved medicine to treat ALS, and it was released on the market in 1995.

“In my lifetime, I have seen amazing advances in science and medicine, and I am hopeful that someday we will find a cure for ALS,” said Cutler.  “Until that day, we must continue to encourage medical researchers, innovators and drug companies to increase their study of treatments for this disease.”

More information about Cutler and his legislative priorities is available at www.RepCutler.com and www.Facebook.com/RepCutler

Representative Bryan Cutler
100th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact:  Nicole Wamsley
717.783.8063
nwamsley@pahousegop.com
Twitter.com/RepBryanCutler
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