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J Pediatr Ophthalmol Strabismus. 2017 Nov 1;54(6):346-355. doi: 10.3928/01913913-20170510-01. Epub 2017 Aug 29.

Video Game Vision Syndrome: A New Clinical Picture in Children?

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To examine a possible relationship between exposure to video games/electronic screens and visual issues in children between 3 and 10 years of age.

METHODS:

An observational, cross-sectional study of a population of children using video games was employed. All patients between 3 and 10 years of age were recruited at an outpatient unit accredited by the Italian Regional Health Service. Three hundred twenty children (159 boys and 161 girls; mean age = 6.9 ± 2 years) were observed. Ophthalmological examination included assessment of stereoscopic vision on Lang-Stereotests I and II (LANG-STEREOTEST AG, Küsnacht, Switzerland) and identification of the dominant eye using the Dolman method. Furthermore, a questionnaire was used to record asthenopic symptoms and daily exposure to video games and electronic screens. Two groups of children were examined according to the average amount of time spent playing video games daily: children who played video games for less than 30 minutes per day and not every day (control group) and children who played video games for 30 minutes or more every day (video game group). Both groups were then divided into two subgroups: children using other types of electronic screens (eg, televisions, computers, tablets, and smartphones) for less than 3 hours daily (low electronic use subgroup) and children using other types of electronic screens for 3 hours or more per day (high electronic use subgroup).

RESULTS:

Asthenopia (especially headache, eyelid tic, transient diplopia, and dizziness), absence of fine stereopsis, and refractive errors were statistically more frequent (mainly in the dominant eye) in children in the video game group.

CONCLUSIONS:

These symptoms were frequent and peculiar in the video game group and might be part of a video game vision syndrome that has not been defined yet. It is important to recognize these signs as possible functional disorders to avoid erroneous diagnostic and therapeutic interventions. [J Pediatr Ophthalmol Strabismus. 2017;54(6):346-355.].

PMID:
28850642
DOI:
10.3928/01913913-20170510-01
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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