For about 10 minutes, KU School of Medicine-Wichita students in Tiffany Schwasinger-Schmidt’s third-year neurology clerkship class get to see what it’s like to have Alzheimer’s, dementia or Parkinson’s disease.
By slipping on a virtual reality headset, a student becomes Beatriz, a middle-aged Latina woman, and experiences her 10-year journey with Alzheimer's, from her early-onset diagnosis to the late stages of her disease and need for residential care.
Students also can experience what life is like for Dima, a Lebanese American immigrant who has a form of dementia and Parkinson's disease, as she moves from in-home care with her family to a residential community as her health declines.
Hands tremble, shadows are mistaken as threatening figures, objects become hard to grasp, anxiety and aggression set in as the world around them becomes more confusing.[...] Read the full article.