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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Can sunbed trigger seizures?

Hello,I started having epiletic fits at the age of 16 and my last seizure was approx 25 years ago. I had been on sunbeds years ago a few times whilst being on medication and nothing ever happened to me. I know they are not good for you but I would like a sunbed once a week but am worried they might trigger my seizures off again.Could you please answer this question.Thank youCarole
Mon, 19 Aug 2019
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Neurologist 's  Response

Sunbeds have the POTENTIAL of triggering a seizure (especially in someone with known epilepsy. Even if well-controlled) due to 2 major things about the beds that patients may not realize or think about.

1. Sunbeds sometimes possess FLICKERING LIGHTS that flash on/off and give a strobe effect.

This will trigger anyone with what we call PHOTIC DRIVING (sensitivity to flashing lights).

This is rare but it can happen.

2. Dehydration from the bed if one stays on too long or fails to hydrate during a session.

This is the physical state of the body that is always a risk for seizure in patients so always carry and drink water while sun bedding.

Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if I can assist you further.

Take care

Dr Dariush Saghafi, Neurologist
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