Novel Interactive Eye-Tracking Game for Training Attention in Children With Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

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Objective: To assess whether the eye-tracking approach of the RECOGNeyes game has potential therapeutic benefits for children with neurodevelopmental disorders, in particular attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). RECOGNeyes is a computer game that is played using the eyes as the game controller. The rationale behind the game is that individuals with ADHD have an underdeveloped attention control system. This attention control system is underdeveloped not because they lack this capacity but because this ability has not been sufficiently developed. The game was designed as an intervention for training visual attention in ADHD.

Methods: The sample included 28 children aged 8–15 years (18 aged < 12 y and 10 aged ≥ 12 y) previously diagnosed with ADHD (DSM-5 criteria). The participants were randomly divided into 2 groups. The experimental group played RECOGNeyes with eye-tracker for 3 weeks (3 times/week) at home, while the control group played the game using the mouse. Different attentional parameters were assessed before and after training. The study was conducted from January 2018–June 2018.

Results: Participants from the eye-tracker group showed an improvement posttest compared to pretest in impulsivity (P = .0067), reaction time (P < .0001), and fixation gaze control (P < .0001). No changes were found in mouse control between pretest and posttest assessments.

Conclusion: RECOGNeyes is a child-friendly, interactive game combined with eye-tracking technology that seems to provide an improvement in the visual attention system, which is especially indicated for ADHD patients. This game might be used as an alternative to pharmacologic therapy and may provide new insights into the treatment of ADHD.​

Prim Care Companion CNS Disord 2019;21(4):19m02428

https://doi.org/10.4088/PCC.19m02428