ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Local ALS patients and their doctors welcome the first new drug to treat the disease in more than 20 years.

It’s called Radicava, a near-daily infusion treatment that helps slow progression of the degenerative disease better known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. ALS attacks the nerves and muscles.

SLU Care’s Dr. Ghazala Hayat is director of the ALS Clinic at SSM Health SLU Hospital:

“As an infusion, it’s a little more involved as the treatment is concerned, but anything which can improve patient’s quality of life and slow the progression is very welcome,” she says.

Dr. Hayat says 80 percent of her patients request to be on Radicava. A small Japanese study showed the drug could slow ALS progression by a third.

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