247056 Frequency of and risk factors for headaches among viewers of 3-dimensional (3D) movies

Tuesday, November 1, 2011: 1:20 PM

Jaime Mirowsky , Department of Environmental Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, Tuxedo, NY
Eric Saunders , Department of Environmental Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, Tuxedo, NY
June Kim , Department of Environmental Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY
Joshua Vaughan , Department of Environmental Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, Tuxedo, NY
Michael Marmor , Department of Environmental Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY
Anecdotal reports suggest that headaches are not uncommon among viewers of recently released 3D movies, but epidemiologic surveys have not been reported. We hypothesized that headaches are common in 3D movies relative to 2D movies. Three groups of students in an introductory epidemiology class conducted separate studies of the issue. Group 1 compared the incidence of headaches among 66 individuals who viewed 2D movies and 38 who viewed 3D movies. No headaches were reported by men; 4.9% (2/41) of women reported headaches when viewing 2D movies compared to 25%% (5/20) when viewing 3D movies (odds ratio for headaches among 3D vs. 2D viewers = 6.5; 95% CI, = 1.1 37). Group 2 recruited 140 3D movies viewers, among whom there was an inverse association of headaches with age (with 22.4% (19/85) of 18-29 year-olds , 11.6% (5/43) of 3039 year-olds, and 0% (0/12) of >= 40 years-olds; p for trend = 0.03). Headaches also were associated with a prior diagnosis of migraines (OR = 7.8, 95% CI = 2.2 28.3). Group 3 recruited 85 3D movie viewers, and found that those who watched the movies while wearing both 3D glasses and prescription eyeglasses reported more headaches within 1 hour after watching the movie than those who watched the movie with 3D glasses only (OR = 6.1, 95% CI = 1.02 39.3). These results support that current 3D technology is associated with headaches, and suggest that there are subgroups who are particularly susceptible to 3D-movie-induced headaches.

Learning Areas:
Environmental health sciences
Epidemiology

Learning Objectives:
Compare the frequency of headaches experienced among persons viewing 3D movies against those who have viewed 2D movies. Identify susceptible populations that experience headaches as an adverse health effect of 3D movie viewing.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have collected and analyzed the information to be presented as part of the hypothesis I generated.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.