Photosensitive Epilepsy and Visual Discomfort

  • A. Wilkins
Part of the Clinical Medicine and the Nervous System book series (CLIN.MED.NERV.)


Photosensitive epilepsy is interesting partly because it is the most common form of reflex epilepsy, and the discovery of techniques for preventing seizures may be of practical significance, and partly because the visual system is better understood than other sensory systems, and inferences about physiological mechanisms can therefore be made. As will be shown in this chapter, the inferences may help explain not only seizures but also the visual discomfort experienced by people who do not have epilepsy.


Spatial Frequency Visual Cortex Visual Discomfort Paroxysmal Activity Michelson Contrast 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Binnie CD, Darby CE, Wilkins AJ (1979) Pattern-sensitivity: the role of movement. In: Lechner H, Aranibar A (eds) Proceedings of the second European congress of electroencephalography and clinical neurophysiology. Elsevier, Amsterdam, pp 650–655Google Scholar
  2. Binnie CD, Wilkins AJ, de Korte RA (1981) Interhemispheric differences in photosensitivity: II. Intermittent photic stimulation. J Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol 52: 469–472CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Chatrian GE, Lettich E, Miller LH, Green JR (1970) Pattern-sensitivity epilepsy Part 1. An electrographic study of its mechanisms. Epilepsia 11: 125–149PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Darby C, Park D, Smith A, Wilkins A (1986) EEG characteristics of epileptic pattern sensitivity and its relation to the nature of pattern stimulation and the effects of sodium valproate. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol 63: 517–525PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Hubel DH, Wiesel TN (1979) Brain mechanisms of vision. Sci Am 241: 130–144Google Scholar
  6. Jeavons PM, Harding GFA (1975) Photosensitive epilepsy. Heinemann, LondonGoogle Scholar
  7. Masland RH (1986) The functional architecture of the retina. Sci Am 255 (6): 90–99CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Meldrum BS, Wilkins AJ (1984) Photosensitive epilepsy: integration of pharmacological and psychophysical evidence. In: Schwartzkroin P, Wheal HW (eds) Electrophysiology of epilepsy. Academic, London, pp 51–77Google Scholar
  9. Nulty DD, Wilkins AJ, Williams JM (1987) Mood, pattern sensitivity and headache: a longitudinal study. Psychol Med 17: 705–713PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Wilkins AJ (1986) What is visual discomfort? Trends Neurosci 9 (8): 343–346CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Wilkins AJ, Lindsay J (1985) Common forms of epilepsy: physiological mechanisms and techniques for treatment. In: Pedley TA, Meldrum BS (eds) Recent advances in epilepsy II. Churchill Livingstone, Edinburgh, pp 239–271Google Scholar
  12. Wilkins AJ, Nimmo-Smith I (1984) On the reduction of eye-strain when reading. Ophthalmic Physiol Opt 4: 53–59PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Wilkins AJ, Darby CE, Binnie CD (1979a) Neurophysiological aspects of pattern-sensitive epilepsy. Brain 102: 1–25CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Wilkins AJ, Darby CE, Stefansson SF, Jeavons PM, Harding GFA (1979b) Television epilepsy: the role of pattern. J Electroencephalog Clin Neurophysiol 47: 163–171CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Wilkins AJ, Binnie CD, Darby CE (1980) Visually-induced seizures. Prog Neurobiol 15: 85–117PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Wilkins AJ, Binnie CD, Darby CE (1981) Interhemispheric differences in photosensitive epilepsy I: pattern sensitivity thresholds. J Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol 5: 461–468CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Wilkins

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations