Hypothalamic atrophy with lower body mass index: risk factors for earlier death in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis


  • In patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), those with lower hypothalamic volume and lower body mass index (BMI) are at an increased risk of weight loss and earlier death.

Why this matters

  • Weight loss prior to or following ALS symptom onset is associated with faster disease progression and earlier death. The role of hypothalamic dysfunction in the etiology for weight loss is unclear.

  • Identification of patients with ALS who are at risk of faster progression and earlier death will inform appropriate management.