Living with Lou Gehrig's disease

Living with Lou Gehrig's disease

Canyon, Texas - He has a wife, two teenagers and a terminal illness. May is ALS Awareness month, a condition also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

Canyon resident, Dennis Leazenby, was diagnosed with the disease a few years ago.

"You lose your voluntary muscle control first, that's what it attacks first. Your mind, your heart... all that stays healthy," Leazenby said. "Then you kind of just slowly, slowly, slowly, get choked off from air, you know, over a period of time."

Many doctors and researchers are trying to wrap their minds around ALS. The disease causes nerve cells in the brain to waste away, eventually causing a person to lose control of their muscles.

"Thinking about sitting in a chair and basically being a noodle with a fully working mind, not being able to move or get up... That's the scary part of it," said Leazenby.

The cause of the disease is unknown and it can claim a life within a few years, but Leazenby has lived with it for three-and-a-half years. He says herbal medicine and laser treatments from his chiropractor are helping him stay strong.

"It helps with your mental thoughts, it reads your body and sees what your body is lacking," Leazenby explained,"It almost seems like magic at first."

His chiropractor, Dr. Shane Riemer, says the treatments help pinpoint chronic, inflammatory responses.

"You check with that and you start calming the system down with all these little things that keep the body chronically inflamed," Riemer said, "Then all of a sudden, the body will start working and, neurologically, it just helps the body take care of itself."

Though the news of ALS is hard to accept, Leazenby's family takes things day by day. They say in the end, it has made them stronger.