MEER | Motor Neuron Disease
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Motor Neuron Disease


Introduction to Motor Neuron Disease

Motor neuron disease is a rare, progressive disease affecting the nerves in the brain and spinal cord that supply the muscles of the body. This leads to weakness of the muscles and reduced function. The management of motor neuron disease by Meer PT includes; exercises and stretching, joint care, positioning, the provision of aids and equipment, and breathing exercises. Through physiotherapy we aim to maintain your quality of life for as long as possible.

What is Motor Neuron Disease?

Motor neuron disease (MND) is a term used to describe a group of related diseases that affect the motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord. Motor neurons are the nerve cells along which the brain transmits instructions to the muscles. Therefore, degeneration of the motor neurons leads to weakness and wasting of muscles. Motor neuron disease is most common among people aged 50 to 70, and affects men slightly more than women.


Diagnosis of Motor Neuron Disease

The diagnosis of motor neuron disease is established by a neurologist based on the history of the symptoms and a neurological examination. There is no diagnostic test for motor neuron disease. Other investigations may be performed to rule out other disorders that may present with similar symptoms to motor neuron disease.

Despite this, the diagnosis of motor neuron disease remains a clinical one. Once other diseases have been excluded, a rapid progression of symptoms is a strong diagnostic factor. Although the progression of motor neuron disease may sometimes “plateau”, it will never resolve and will ultimately continue.

Physiotherapy for Motor Neuron Disease

Meer PT understand how a diagnosis of motor neuron disease can affect all aspects of the lives of you and your loved ones. Through physiotherapy we aim to keep your work, home and social life as active as possible.


Physiotherapy for motor neuron disease includes;

* exercises and stretches
* joint care
* breathing exercises and chest clearance techniques
* pain control
* anticipating and minimizing secondary complications of motor neuron disease
* provision of equipment, walking aids, orthoses and wheelchairs
* advice for you and those caring for you on handling techniques and equipment
* referral to appropriate health professionals (eg. occupational therapy, speech and language therapy)

The effects of physiotherapy can be:

* increased quality of life
* increased independence
* increased energy levels
* reduced pain and muscle spasms
* reduced risk of chest infections
* reduced stiffness