Augusta University ALS Center
The Augusta University ALS Clinic was started in 2004 as a half day clinic each month. It has now grown to a bimonthly full day clinic. Our clinic is ALSA certified clinic which means that we underwent a rigorous certification process. The clinic is a multidisciplinary clinic so that our ALS patient can receive all needed services at a single visit. It is staffed by 2 dedicated ALS specialists (Michael H. Rivner, MD and Ben Barnes, MD), physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech and language pathologists, respiratory therapist, a dietician and representatives from the ALS Association. In addition, we have equipment vendors in the clinic so that patients can get needed equipment during the clinic. We have an active relationship with the ALS association of Georgia and South Carolina which allows our patients easy access to their services. We are associated with our sister ALS clinic in Macon Georgia (Atrium-Navicent Medical Center) that allows our patients in Central and southwestern Georgia easy access to ALS Specialty care.
Patients suspected of ALS are seen in our neuromuscular clinic by one of our ALS specialists. During the visit, we can do a diagnostic EMG so the diagnosis can be made at the time of the visit. We guarantee that we see all patients suspected of ALS within 1 month.
We have an active clinical research program with 3 full time research associates. Over the years we have participated in numerous ALS Clinical research studies. Currently we are engaged in several clinical research studies.
- Healy Platform Trial--Multiple protocols tested within this trial.
- Phoenix Trial--Phase III trial of AMX0035 (Relyvrio)
- COMBAT-ALS—neuroprotective agent (ibudilast)
- Cardinal Trial--oxidoreductase inhibitor to reduce oxidative stress (PTC857)
- Biorepository Trial--Collect samples for evaluation, including serum, CSF and muscle tissue
- ALS Database--Create an ALS database
- Apellis Study—C3 inhibitor
- Anelixis Study--monoclonal antibody antagonist to CD40LG (AT-1501)
We have participated in several Basic research projects looking at the etiology of ALS. In the past we looked at the association of LRP4/Agrin antibodies in ALS and SGPG antibodies in ALS. We working with a Basic Researcher, Dr Eric Vitriol . He will be looking at the Actin cytoskeleton in ALS. We hope that projects such as this will lead to understanding the cause of ALS which hopefully lead to better treatment for our patients.
Our multi-disciplinary clinic is designed to help our ALS patients throughout all stages of their disease from the initial diagnosis to Hospice care. Our patients have access of all the most recent treatments which have been shown to improve outcome. Our patients have access to clinical trials and basic research projects which hopefully, will one day, lead to a cure.