AAP: Interactive Video Games Tied to Range of Injuries

More likely than traditional video games to cause abrasions and shoulder, ankle, and foot injuries
By Beth Gilbert
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Oct. 4 (HealthDay News) -- New interactive gaming devices appear to be associated with more abrasions and injuries of the shoulder, ankle, and foot than traditional gaming devices, according to a study presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference & Exhibition, held from Oct. 2 to 5 in San Francisco.

Patrick O. O'Toole, M.D., of the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and colleagues reviewed National Electronic Injury Surveillance System data on the 696 video game-related injuries reported between Jan. 1, 2004, and Jan. 1, 2009, to determine the types of injuries suffered from interactive and traditional gaming devices.

The investigators identified 604 injuries from traditional games and 92 injuries from interactive games. Individuals in the interactive-game group were significantly more likely to injure their shoulder, ankle, and foot, compared to those in the traditional-game group. In addition, those in the interactive-game group were significantly more likely to sustain a contusion/abrasion or a sprain/strain than those in the traditional-game group. While bystander injuries occurred in both groups, significantly more bystander injuries occurred among those in the interactive-game group. All 65 of the reported seizures, all eight of the reported eye pain/visual disturbances, and 23 of 24 neck injuries were in the traditional-game group.

"This study details the different injuries sustained while participating in interactive and traditional video games," the authors write. "Younger children under the age of 10 should be supervised while video games are being played to prevent bystander injuries, which are more common with interactive games."

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