Anti-Depressants Used to Curb Video Game Addiction
A recent study on video game addiction in Korea revealed that a commonly available anti-depressant, Bupropion (sold as Welbutrin, Zyban and Voxra), can decrease the addicts' craving for playing games.
Gamepron - At the commencement of the test, and again after six weeks of drug treatment, brain activity was recorded via MRI as the participants were shown a collection of StarCraft cues (we assume pictures of Sarah Kerrigan were among them, and probably a few zerglings). In addition, the scientists also recorded any cravings for playing the game, the severity of internet addiction and any symptoms of depression.
Initial results showed that the “addicted” gamers showed higher left-hemisphere brain activity in response to the game cues, when compared to the “non-addicted” group. After six weeks of drug treatment, the activity was still higher than the other group, but less than was first recorded.
We are a bit skeptical about the results, mainly because the test group consisted of only 20 individuals. Mostly, however, it is the fact that while the study claims that some of the subjects had been missing school for two months because of StarCraft 2, while the fact is that StarCraft 2 has only been released for only a month. Anyhow, it's interesting to see how this study will affect future endeavors in gaming addiction studies.
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