By Michael KlimasPublished November 11, 2018 11:57:47By Michael KlemischThis is a story about how one man’s quest to find a cure for ALS led to the creation of a body part.
The story is about the man, and the journey he made to get there.
It started with a phone call.
In the summer of 2014, a few weeks after his son was diagnosed with ALS, Steve Denton was having difficulty walking, and could only stand for short periods.
He was diagnosed, and was given an experimental treatment for ALS.
Steve Denton and his son, Cody, at the family home.
By the time he was ready to make his way into the treatment, the symptoms were getting worse.
The doctors at the University of California Irvine Hospital were telling him to slow down, so Steve could get more time to see a neurologist.
So Steve took out his cell phone, and started sending out a series of text messages to his wife and family, asking for help.
A couple of weeks later, he received an email from a company called Theranos.
They were looking for a doctor to test Cody and Steve’s blood.
And they were looking at a lab in Los Angeles, where the company had a lab.
Denton called up Theranos and said, ‘I want to make a phonecall to my son.’
The phone rang, and Cody Denton answered.
‘Hello?’ was the voice on the other end.DENTON: My name is Steve.
DENTON (on phone): My name’s Cody.
Denton: OK, so you know what you need to do, right?
DENTONS (on phones): OK.
I’ve just been talking to Theranos about this lab.
The doctor in Los Angeles, what do you need me to do?
Denton:(voice off) Okay, so I’ll call you back.
The next day, Cody was tested.
He came back positive for ALS, and Theranos announced it.
They said he had 100 percent recovery.DENTSON: That was the first time I ever heard of ALS.
They knew me.DATTON: Did you have any hesitation about calling Theranos?DENTONS: No, I didn’t.
But it was a bit of a shock, and it took a couple of months to get over it.DATSON: What was the conversation like?
DENTSON (voice off): I was kind of like, OK, this is amazing.
This is great.
Theres a doctor in LA that’s treating my son.
And I was like, Wow, what are they doing?
And they’re like, I’m sorry, we don’t have any patients in LA.DATTON: So when Cody was diagnosed he was told he’d have to go to the lab in L.A.?DATSONS: Yeah.DANNON: And what happened there?DATSons: Well, he was in his room, and he had a couple glasses of wine.
And theres a lot of time that’s gone by.
Dattons was able to make the call to Therbos, and they took Cody and his blood sample, which was tested at the hospital in LA, and found out he was on the ALS virus.
Datsons family had been looking for the right doctor to help Cody with his diagnosis.
They were hoping he’d get the right treatment, and that would make a difference.
They even reached out to Dr. Michael Greer.
Greer is the doctor who diagnosed Cody with ALS.DATES: He is a doctor, and his office is right down the hall from my house.
He just opened up the door, and said that he’d been treating my kid for five years.
And he had been treating a patient that was also on the same path.
He said that was a lot to go through, and to me, it seemed like a bit too much, but he was able, and, as he said, he had his son back.DETSON: They got me on the phone.
And, yeah, they said they had an appointment, and then they were out.DANSON: So you said, hey, if I’m gonna go, I want to be the one who goes, I know you’re gonna do everything you can.
What did you tell them about your family history, what did you talk about?DATSON: I said, we have three children, my first two of them are autistic, so it was really important to talk to my parents about this.DANSON: OK.
So you were a really good listener.
DATSONS (voice on phone): Yeah.
Datsons says he told them that Cody was on a very experimental course of treatment.
They weren’t sure how long that was going to last, and how much