Epilepsy and videogames

Epilepsia. 2004:45 Suppl 1:24-6. doi: 10.1111/j.0013-9580.2004.451003.x.


Since the first case of videogame (VG) epilepsy was reported in 1981, many cases of seizures triggered by VGs were reported, not only in photosensitive, but also in non-photosensitive children and adolescents with epilepsy. We provide an overview of the literature with overall conclusions and recommendations regarding VG playing. Specific preventive measures concerning the physical characteristics of images included in commercially available VGs (flash rate, choice of colors, patterns, and contrast) can lead in the future to a clear decrease of this problem. In addition to the positive effect of such measures, the collaborative studies performed in France and in the rest of Europe have stressed the importance of a safe distance to the screen of > or = 2 m, and the less provocative role of 100-Hz screens.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Epilepsy, Reflex / epidemiology
  • Epilepsy, Reflex / etiology*
  • Epilepsy, Reflex / prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic
  • Photic Stimulation / adverse effects*
  • Photic Stimulation / methods
  • Video Games / adverse effects*