Award Date

Spring 2010

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Health Physics


Health Physics and Diagnostic Sciences

Advisor 1

Phillip Patton, Committee Chair

First Committee Member

Steen Madsen

Second Committee Member

Ralf Sudowe

Graduate Faculty Representative

Merrill Landers

Number of Pages



Many people can spend a few days with an acute form of sinusitis, a stuffy nose, or sinus congestion that inhibits their ability to smell, but there are fourteen million Americans over the age of fifty that suffer from some form of chronic olfactory dysfunction. Some neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease have demonstrated that olfactory dysfunction is a frequent and early sign. While these diseases have no known cure, there are medicines that exist to slow the progression of such debilitating illnesses. By identifying such diseases in their early stages, we can improve the quality of life for millions of people throughout the world. This research project will begin to open the doors for more investigation into the relationship of olfaction and Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, and even epilepsy by the development of an fMRI olfactory stimulation protocol. This protocol successfully identified the olfactory regions of the brain of normal patients.


Alzheimer's; BOLD imaging; Functional MRI; Olfactory; Parkinson's; Smell test


Neurosciences | Radiology

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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