Darrell Tarte's Bio
In 2009, Darrell starting having ringing in his left ear. He went to see a specialist and after running extensive tests they determined he had Multiple Sclerosis. In the spring of 2010, he started on a daily injection to help slow down the progression of the disease. Currently, Darrell is taking treatments that are very costly and sometimes painful. He had been doing well on the MS daily injections, but in June of 2012 he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. He had to under-go 13 rounds of radiation treatment to his neck in the month of Aug and responded well.
Unfortunately, the radiation lowered his already low immune system and it kicked off a series of MS flare ups that have not been able to be controlled. In Dec, a new, active lesion was discovered in his spine, which is causing electric-like sensations down his already weakened legs. The Dr’s have been working to try new treatments to help reduce these new symptoms. He has also developed bad headaches due to an active lesion behind his left eye. This lesion also causes blurred vision some days. When they removed the lump in his neck, he lost part of his taste to food, his saliva production was decreased, so he has a dry mouth most of the time. The treatments made large sores in his mouth and throat, which made it hard to eat and swallow for over a month. Those have all gone away now, but the taste and saliva did not return. The treatments also made him very tired and susceptible to picking up infection very easily, due to it zapping his immune system. His thyroid now has to be tested yearly due to the amount of radiation it absorbed during his treatment.
Currently, Darrell is taking a 3 hour monthly infusion drug called Tysabri. This drug helps to slow down the progression of the disease. The previous meds he was on lasted about 3 yrs before it stopped working. There are many new treatments hitting the market, so hopefully he will be a candidate for some of these when they are released.
As we go thru the stages of these diseases, Darrell has good days and bad. Most of the time, he gets tired very easily and has to rest. We have many Dr. appts each month and the doctors work very closely to monitor his medicine and his symptoms. As things change, they adjust the medications he is on to help relieve the painful symptoms. He tries to stay as active as possible, eat healthy and get a lot of rest to help his body work better. MS research is an on-going process and many new drugs come out each year. The fundraising that is done helps patients like Darrell with new drug treatments, things that help assist him, like wheelchairs, canes etc.
Thank you for your support of Darrell and his family.