First FDA approved ALS treatment in 22 years now available at Navicent Health

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – The FDA has approved the first new drug treatment to ALS since 1995 and it’s available right here in Middle Georgia.

“Most patients with this disease die within five year of the first symptom,” said neuro specialist Dr. Michael Rivner.

This new drug won’t slow down time, but it will slow down the effects of ALS.

“ALS is a progressive neuro-muscular disease where a patient develops weakness in one part of their body and this weakness will continue to progress through out their entire body,” he continued.

That’s why Gloria Hernandez and her family are grateful after hearing about Radicava–the latest drug available through Navicent Health’s Rehabilitation Clinic.

Radicava is the first FDA approved drug treatment for ALS since the early 1990’s

“Wow I was really excited really wanted to look it up..and for them to say there’s something new, I’m all for it,” said Gloria’s daughter-in-law Kaleata Hernandez

It isn’t a cure for ALS but studies conducted over in Japan showed that it did in fact reduce the speed of the disease’s progress.

Doctor Michael Rivner says he’s happy his patients won’t have to go too far to get it.

“I’m very pleased that we have the clinic here in Macon where we can offer that kind of treatment to our patients so they don’t have to go anywhere else to get it.”

Kaleata Hernandez says when she began researching ALS and saw the toll it could take on her mother-in- law, they were preparing for the worst case scenario.

“As a family we’re worried about her and we’re not supposed to cry, but we have to try and be supportive,” said Hernandez.

Now she and her family are hoping that with this new treatment, they can look forward to a best case scenario for Gloria.

Dr. Michael Rivner says the new drug treatment could be available as early as August to ALS patients at Navicent’s Rehabilitation Clinic.

Navicent is one of only three ALS treatment facilities in the state. Two of those, we know will offer the Radicava drug treatment.

Categories: Bibb County, Georgia News, Health, Local News

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