Background and purpose: Several studies have reported an increase in ALS incidence in recent years but population-based studies in Europe do not confirm this trend. To analyze ALS incidence over time we conducted a retrospective incidence study in the Padova district of Italy (1992 to 2005). We had previously conducted a survey in the same area in the years 1980-1991. Methods: We used the archives of all the neurological wards of the Padova district to identify all subjects with a discharge diagnosis of ALS or motor neuron disease and resident in the Padova district. Results: We ascertained 182 patients (85 males and 97 females; male:female ratio 0.88:1) over the 14-year study period. The annual incidence rates adjusted by sex and age increased from 1.31/100000/year in the years 1992-1994 to 1.92/100000/year in the years 2004-2005. Conclusions: This study confirmed an ALS incidence increase over the last 25 years in the Padova district. The increase in incidence may be partially explained by the ageing of the general population rather than by an improved diagnostic assessment.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology