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Potentially seizure provoking videosequences in spanish tv: the smoking gun

Título de la revista
Parra, J.
Anciones, B.
Hodgetts, M.
Jackson, D.
Harding, G. F.



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Título del volumen
Wiley Online Library


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Purpose: To analyse systematically the content of potentially seizureprovoking video sequences from different Spanish television broadcast-ers checking for compliance with current guidelines in other countries.One in 4000 subjects is at risk of having a seizure when confronted withcertain visual stimuli, often without being aware of their condition. Tele-vision is the most common cause of photosensitive seizures in the wes-tern world, but only the UK and Japan have adopted guidelines to preventthe broadcasting of video sequences that could potentially trigger sei-zures in susceptible people.Method: Television programs of all 5 national broadcasters availablevia Digital Terrestrial Television were recorded between 8 AM and 12PM on 5 consecutive days, from January 1st 2012 through January 6th2012. In addition, a channel with programming dedicated to children anda musical channel were also recorded. The video content was analysedusing a HardingFPA Flash and Pattern Analyser (Cambridge Researchsystems) for compliance with the UK Ofcom guidelines.Result: We analysed 105 hours of television programs. We found 738incidents that violated the guidelines (mean 105.43, CI95% 58.74–151.12), mostly luminance flashing (714 incidents, mean 102, CI95%55.83–148.17). Thirteen incidents involved spatial patterns and 11 redflashing. Forty-seven additional incidents considered dangerous weredetected which, although technically meeting guidelines, continued foran extended period of time and were considered dangerous.Conclusion: Spanish broadcasters seem to be unaware of the risk ofphotosensitive epilepsy. National Guidelines should be adopted to lowerthe risk of Spanish TV content triggering epileptic seizures in susceptibleviewers
Palabras clave
Animals , Epilepsy , Humans