Between 1989 and 1998, 1226 cases of ALS/MND were identified in Scotland, with mean age of onset 65.2 (SD 11.9) years for men and 67.2 (SD 11.0) for women. Annual standardized incidence was 2.40 per 100,000 (95% CI 2.22-2.58). Using capture recapture methods we confirm a high level of case ascertainment for each year of study. Incidence and ascertainment of ALS has remained stable in a large population over a prolonged period of time. Large population-based databases can be used to test aetiological hypotheses.