Spotlight on: Kevin Marcaida ????
“Hello, my name is Kevin Marcaida. I’m a Neuroscientist at Imperial College London and Investor in Biotech and Pharmaceuticals. My story started in 2019 on a trip to NYC. Before the onset, I experienced severe jetlag from the 8-hour flight from London, and because of this, I couldn’t sleep for more than 3 hours at a time. I began to experience symptoms gradually – I first noticed glimpses of VS on a casual nature hike in Long Island. When glancing up at the forest canopy, I saw flashes of bright colours followed by afterimages of the sun. At first, I didn’t think too much of this. However, after a few dysregulated nights of sleep, the symptoms became more pronounced. Near the end of the trip, I managed to get my first proper night’s rest. However, upon waking, the symptoms I experienced became permanent and was accompanied by white ‘static’ overlaying my visual field.
What I find very frustrating about VSS is the lack of medical insight, especially in the clinics. I had several consultations with General Practitioners, with each visit being turned away or receiving the typical ‘anxiety’ diagnosis. Irritated by these experiences, I decided to investigate the symptoms myself. Given my background as a Biomedical Scientist, I quickly found several research journals and an entire community dedicated to VSS. Whilst I wasn’t too pleased with the research findings, I was at least happy to know that other people understand and are working hard to find solutions – eventually inspiring me to take an interest in Neuroscience.
At the end of the day, I do not let my disorder define who I am and what I can accomplish. However, I acknowledge that it’s part of me forever – and that’s perfectly fine. I always believe that it’s best to see both the good and the bad in experiences, no matter the situation. It’s ultimately just a matter of perception.”