Prolonged gaming blamed for rickets rise

Red alert - put down the rickets-riddled joystick
Red alert - put down the rickets-riddled joystick

Too many hours spent playing videogames indoors is contributing to a rise in rickets, according to a new study by doctors.

Professor Simon Pearce and Dr Tim Cheetham of Newcastle University have written a paper in the British Medical Journal which warns of the rickets uptake – a disease which sufferers get when deficient in Vitamin D.

The study boils down to the fact that as more people play videogames indoors they don't get enough sunlight and this has meant the hospitals are now having to combat a disease that was last in the papers around the time Queen Victoria was on the throne.

Well, there are 20 new cases in Newcastle each year, which is apparently enough for doctors to be worried.

"Vitamin D levels in parts of the population are precarious," said Pearce about the findings.

"The average worker nowadays is in a call centre, not out in the field. People tend to stay at home rather than going outside to kick a ball around. They stay at home on computer games."

Smell a flower

TechRadar spoke to Tim Ingham, Editor of CVG, who is less than impressed with videogames being singled out as a cause of rickets, explaining to TechRadar: "What a cruel headline to unleash in the same week that Ubisoft's limb-flailing Just Dance becomes the UK's most popular game.

"It sounds like rubbish to me; I've put myself throughsome pretty heavy gaming sessions and the worst I've been left with is aching thumbs and a regretfully empty bag of Haribo.

"That said,it's good to take regular breaks from your PS3; go outside, smell a flower, talk to a girl, that sort of thing. It'll give you a fresh perspective on life. Same applies to miserly, game-hating, ignorant hacks."

So, throw away your poop-sock, go smell a flower but also still rock out on Guitar Hero. Everything in moderation, people.

Via the Metro

Marc Chacksfield

Marc Chacksfield is the Editor In Chief, at DC Thomson. He started out life as a movie writer for numerous (now defunct) magazines and soon found himself online - editing a gaggle of gadget sites, including TechRadar, Digital Camera World and Tom's Guide UK. At Shortlist you'll find him mostly writing about movies and tech, so no change there then.