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Toronto organization introduces device to help better understand Parkinson’s disease

Click to play video: 'Have you ever wondered what it’s like for a loved one who has Parkinson’s?'
Have you ever wondered what it’s like for a loved one who has Parkinson’s?
WATCH ABOVE: Have you ever wondered what it’s like for a loved one who has Parkinson’s? Susan Hay has more on a ground-breaking device being introduced by a Toronto organization – May 1, 2017

Klick Labs, a digital healthcare innovation lab in Toronto, has introduced the SymPulse Tele-Empathy – a ground-breaking device that records and transmits Parkinson’s tremors allowing doctors and caregivers to feel exactly what it’s like to live with the disease.

“It puts you in the shoes of somebody with Parkinson’s disease by making you feel what they feel by literally transmitting their tremors to you as opposed to being able to observe the patient, which is what we normally do when we try to empathize with the patient,” said Yan Fossat, vice president of Klick Lab at Klick Health.

Footage was taken in Vancouver of Jim Smerdon, a 43-year-old Parkinson’s patient, with his identical twin brother Pat. For the first time, Pat, was able to feel the tremors and know exactly what Jim has been going through since his diagnosis a decade ago.

“It’s like I lost complete control over my arm,” Pat said.

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For Jim, it was almost a sense of relief knowing his brother could feel what he’s been feeling since he was 33 years old.

“I’m not sure how to describe it,” Jim said. “It’s the first time I’ve ever seen my tremors in someone else.”

“We think Tele-Empathy in particular, the ability to use technology to induce empathy, is really a game changer,” said Fossat.

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