Beware Playstation-itis! Video Gaming Results in Rare, Nasty Rash

By Rachel Cernansky | February 24, 2009 6:25 pm

play.jpgDoctors in Switzerland have diagnosed a skin disorder that editors at The Onion could very well have created. PlayStation palmar hidradenitis is the name given to a condition that skin specialists have identified as being caused by the use of video game controllers. Swiss doctors have reported their findings, which are based on one patient, a 12-year old girl, in the British Journal of Dermatology.

The girl had recently started to play games on PlayStation for several hours a day, and continued to do so despite the appearance of red, painful sores. Four weeks after the sores developed, she was examined at the Geneva University Hospital and diagnosed with a skin disorder called “‘idiopathic eccrine hidradenitis,” which normally causes red, sore lumps on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. It has been identified before, but rarely on the hands alone and is usually seen on the soles of children’s feet after they have engaged in intense physical activity.

According to Reuters:

The researchers suspected that grasping the console’s hand-grips together with repeated pushing of the buttons produced minor but prolonged injury to the palm of the girl’s hands, which can be made worse by sweating during a tense game. The doctors recommended the girl stop playing and she recovered fully after 10 days, the researchers said.


BBC News added that researchers have noted cases of addiction to video games, “but the symptoms had initially been thought to be psychological. However, some physical symptoms, such as acute tendonitis, dubbed Wiitis,” have emerged.

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Image: Flickr / déboramarinho

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  • chris H

    ive been playing video games since i was 8, now 27. never had a rash of this sort, i call bollucks

  • Pingback: Sony Addresses ‘PlayStation Rash’ | GameCyte()

  • Pingback: Shooting Your Boss: Encouraged in Video Games, Less So in Real Life | Discoblog | Discover Magazine()

  • http://nintendo-wii-cheap.com Jasmine

    You made many good points there.

  • http://www.cubefield-game.info/ Cubefield 2

    This is a great post and its very creative indeed but if only you people would properly give cubefield a shot. Its a great game. Very addicitve and very entertaining to all age groups.

  • Lance

    Our 13 year old son has had a rash in between his fingers for over a year. Its centered between his index and middle fingers and on the ouside of his hands along the pinky finger and hand. Very dry,cracking and itchy. We have treated it with several things and it does not go away. He is gaming constantly. Similar to athletes foot, sweating in an area for hours with no chance of drying out causes such problems. I think there’s something true about this.

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