The characteristics of photogenic self-induced seizures and their treatment by optical filters in a 2-year-old boy with severe myoclonic epilepsy in infancy are reported from the National Epilepsy Center, Shizuoka Higashi Hospital, Japan. Between 17 and 20 months of age the boy began to induce absences and/or myoclonic jerks by flickering hand movements (FHM) and forced eye closure (FEC). Continuous wearing of a filter decreased the average daily frequency of FHM and, after 10 days, FHM disappeared even without a filter. FHM could also be inhibited by a blank goggle frame, but this placebo effect gradually subsided, while the filter effects were maintained. Optical studies showed that a degree of absorption from 600-700 nm accounted for the filter effect. Blue-tinted contact lenses were tolerated better than goggles and could not be removed. Photosensitivity was gradually reduced and FHMs were not resumed after a period of 6 months, even after removal of the lenses. [1]

COMMENT. Tinted contact lenses were effective in reduction of photosensitivity in a 2-year-old child. The authors recommend continuous use of tinted contacts during daytime from morning to evening in young patients with photogenic seizures.