ALS ice bucket challenge? A little more about it in Polish Posted by on Aug 22, 2014 in Culture

If you are on the social media (and probably 95 % of us are) you most likely heard about ALS bucket challenge.  Almost all of social media pages have been deluged lately with videos and pictures of friends, family and random celebrities dumping buckets of ice-cold water over their heads.

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge (literally “wyzwanie wiadra lodu” ) began as a way to raise money and awareness for ALS research. It’s taking the entire nation by storm. The ALS challenge itself is an easy enough thing to do: If a friend takes the challenge, challenges you to do the same in a video and then tags you in it on social media, you have either 24 hours to do it yourself or donate $100 to an ALS charity of your choice.

The trend shows no signs of abating (Trend nie wykazuje żadnych oznak osłabienia) as more and more people take the challenge, post videos of it on Facebook and other social media sites, then challenge and tag others to do the same.

The National ALS Association said that it and its affiliated chapters had received more than $10 million in donations in a two-week period since the movement began to take off in late July.

What is ALS?

Every 90 minutes someone is diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a progressive neurodegenerative disease that causes muscle weakness, paralysis, and ultimately, respiratory failure. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (stwardnienie zanikowe boczne),  often referred to as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease,” (choroba Lou Gehriga) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord (jest postępującą chorobą neurodegeneracyjną, która wpływa na komórki nerwowe w mózgu i rdzeniu kręgowym). Motor neurons reach from the brain to the spinal cord and from the spinal cord to the muscles throughout the body. The progressive degeneration of the motor neurons in ALS eventually leads to their death. When the motor neurons die, the ability of the brain to initiate and control muscle movement is lost (Po śmierci motoneuronów, zdolność mózgu do inicjowania i kontrolowania ruchu mięśni zanika). With voluntary muscle action progressively affected, patients in the later stages of the disease may become totally paralyzed (sparaliżowani).

A-myo-trophic comes from the Greek language. “A” means no or negative. “Myo” refers to muscle, and “Trophic” means nourishment–“No muscle nourishment.” (Nie odżywianie mięśni) When a muscle has no nourishment, it “atrophies” or wastes away. “Lateral” identifies the areas in a person’s spinal cord where portions of the nerve cells that signal and control the muscles are located. As this area degenerates it leads to scarring or hardening (blizny lub stwardnienie) – “sclerosis” in the region. Early symptoms of ALS often include increasing muscle weakness (zwiększenie osłabienia mięśni), especially involving the arms and legs, speech, swallowing or breathing.

Although the cause of ALS is not completely understood (Chociaż przyczyna ALS nie jest w pełni zrozumiała), the recent years have brought a wealth of new scientific understanding regarding the physiology of this disease.

Most people with ALS live 2-5 years after their first signs of disease. About 10% of people with ALS survive at least 10 years. This variable rate of disease progression makes prognosis difficult to predict and therapies challenging to develop.

While there is not a cure or treatment (lekarstwo lub leczenie) today that halts or reverses ALS, there is one FDA approved drug (FDA zatwierdzony lek), riluzole, that modestly slows the progression of ALS as well as several other drugs in clinical trials that hold promise (kilka innych leków w badaniach klinicznych, które dają obietnicę). This urgent unmet medical need for effective treatments for this devastating and fatal disease is the basis for the research and drug development effort at the nonprofit biotech organization, ALS Therapy Development Institute.

Importantly, there are significant devices and therapies that can manage the symptoms (istnieją istotne urządzenia i terapie, które mogą kontrolować objawy) of ALS that help people maintain as much independence as possible and prolong survival. It is important to remember that ALS is a quite variable disease; no two people will have the same journey or experiences.

“Ice bucket challenge” has been definitely popular in USA, however, it becomes popular in Europe as well and everyone talks about it! It’s also known as “splash” in Europe:)

Here is my ice bucket challenge! I nominate Lorien Green, Meaghan McGonagle, as well as all language bloggers from Transparent Language team! You have 24 hours to complete the challenge, or donate $100 to ALS organization.

Tutaj jest moje wyzwanie wiadra lodu (splash). Nominuję Lorien Green, Meaghan McGonagle oraz wszystkich blogerów językowych z naszej ekipy Transparent Language. Macie 24 godziny aby wypełnić wyzwanie, lub przekazać 100 dolarów do organizacji ALS.


Do następnego razu… (Till next time…)


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About the Author: Kasia

My name is Kasia Scontsas. I grew near Lublin, Poland and moved to Warsaw to study International Business. I have passion for languages: any languages! Currently I live in New Hampshire. I enjoy skiing, kayaking, biking and paddle boarding. My husband speaks a little Polish, but our daughters are fluent in it! I wanted to make sure that they can communicate with their Polish relatives in our native language. Teaching them Polish since they were born was the best thing I could have given them! I have been writing about learning Polish language and culture for Transparent Language’s Polish Blog since 2010.


  1. Merlin Josh:

    So far the best challenge was taken by Bill Gates nominated by Mark Zuckerberg. He made this challenge interesting by designing and constructing a mechanism to strategically pour the bucket of iced water above his head. Simply genius and the best version of this challenge till date.