1. Health

Stephen W. Hawking - ALS or Lou Gehrig's Disease


Updated July 09, 2014

Wheelchair shadow
Janice Lin/ Moment/ Getty Images


Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease

Stephen W. Hawking:

Stephen W. Hawking was diagnosed with ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, in his early 20's. He was given 3-5 years to live with the disease. However, he has lived several decades past this date and has achieved international acclaim as an author and for his work in quantum gravity and theoretical cosmology. He holds numerous degrees and has won over a dozen awards for his scientific research.

Mr. Hawking has published many books, including the following:

  • A Brief History of Time.
  • The Universe in a Nutshell.
  • Black Holes, Baby Universes and Other Essays.
  • A Briefer History of Time with Leonard Mlodinow.
  • The Grand Design with Leonard Mlodinow.
  • George's Secret Key to the Universe with Lucy Hawking.
  • George's Cosmic Treasure Hunt with Lucy Hawking.

Due to complications of ALS, Mr. Hawking uses a speech synthesizer to communicate with his friends, family members and audiences.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.