MOTOR NEURONE DISEASE - TPD SUPER CLAIMS - COMPENSATION SOLICITORSLAWYER HELPLINE: ☎ 1800 339 958
If you are unable to work because of Motor Neurone Disease you may be able to make a TPD claim for a lump sum from the Total & Permanent Disablement insurance contained within your superannuation fund. There is no necessity for you to have been involved in an accident or to have suffered a work related injury to make a TPD claim. If you suffer from total and permanent disability, you may be able to make a TPD claim in addition to receiving your super early as a result of your condition. Our solicitors can advise you in detail as to the requirements of a successful submission, they will prepare all relevant paperwork and will obtain full supporting documentation. Our lawyers will give you advice on the likely success of your claim to a super fund, without further obligation. It costs nothing to use our advice service.
Motor neurone diseases are a collection of progressive nerve diseases that wreck the motor neurons, which are the neurons that control essential voluntary muscle activity, including walking, speaking, breathing and swallowing. There are upper motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord and lower motor neurons, located in the peripheral nerves. Anything that disrupts the connection between those nerves can cause paralysis of the body or a part of the body. The result of the disruption of the connection between these nerves is that the body gradually weakens and wastes away. There are muscle fasciculations or twitching of the muscles as the muscles become denervated. If upper motor neurons are affected, there is a great deal of spasticity of the muscles. If the lower motor neurons are affected, there is weakness of the muscles. Motor neuron diseases can be acquired or inherited.
So who is at risk for motor neurone diseases? It can in fact affect both men and women although men are affected more than women. Children can be afflicted, especially in inherited diseases of the motor neurons. You can see symptoms present at birth or they can gradually affect the child’s ability to get around or coordinate the muscles.
There are a number of motor neurone diseases and the cause of these is not known in most cases. It can be related to environmental factors, genetic factors, viral or toxic factors. Certain exposures to toxic drugs have been found to be related to motor neurone diseases. Autoimmune factors may also play a role in who gets the disease and who doesn’t.
Common motor neurone diseases include amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which happens to affect both upper and lower motor neurons, progressive bulbar palsy, which affects the lower motor neurons of the brainstem, resulting in difficulty with swallowing and chewing. Primary lateral sclerosis is a disease that purely affects the upper motor neurons and progressive muscular atrophy affects solely the lower motor neurons within the spinal cord. Each type of disease has its own set of symptoms, which is how doctors can classify which disease is which.
Genetic motor neurone diseases can be autosomal dominant, meaning that a parent has a fifty-fifty chance of passing the disease onto their child. An autosomal recessive motor neurone disease means that the child has a 25 percent chance of getting the disease from a parent. There are x-linked diseases that only affect men primarily. Females are considered carriers of the disease.
The symptoms of motor neurone disease include those of ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease. It results in wasting of the muscles of the arms primarily and sometimes the legs or the speech. Symptoms include weakening of the hand and arm muscles, followed by muscle atrophy and weakness of the legs, body and the muscles that control the mouth and swallowing. It affects those between the ages of 40-60 years of age and is a disease more commonly seen in men. Cases are sporadic and it is not considered inherited in most cases. There is a genetic mutation seen in one form of ALS that is passed on from parent to child and is a result of a defect in chromosome 21. There is a rare form of ALS that affects juveniles and is inherited. Death is due to respiratory failure because they cannot breathe on their own.
In progressive bulbar palsy, there is bulbar atrophy in the brain stem that controls the neurons which allow for speaking, swallowing, chewing and other facial functions. There is difficulty swallowing in the beginning with emotional lability found as the disease progresses. Some bulbar involvement is also seen in 75 percent of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
Doctors diagnose the diseases through a careful history and neurological examination. Nerve conduction studies can be done to show which nerves are affected. Such studies are called electromyography, which can show how well the nerve is conducting. Lab tests can be done to see if the muscles are wasting away, such as a CPK test. A muscle or nerve biopsy can show if either are damaged and what is going on with these features on a microscopic level.
There are no cures or even standard treatment for motor neurone diseases. Doctors focus on physical and occupational therapy to keep the patient as mobile and functioning as possible before their symptoms worsen to the point of death.LAWYER HELPLINE: ☎ 1800 339 958