'Mario Kart DS' May Have Saved a Boy's Eye

Mario Kart DS

Some parents say that playing too many video games will damage your eyesight, but a six-year-old boy named Ben Michaels began playing a prescribed two hours every day of "Mario Kart DS" to help treat his lazy eye. His medical consultant Ken Nischal from Great Ormond Street Children's Hospital believes the therapy may have contributed to preventing outright blindness.

"When he started he could not identify our faces with his weak eye," his mother Maxine told the Daily Mail. "Now he can read with it although he is still a way off where he ought to be. He was very cooperative with the patch, it had phenomenal effect and we’re very pleased."

The eye movement required to play "Mario Kart" forced Ben to focus and exercise certain muscles, and Nischal believes that activity contributed at the very least to his improved condition, though he stopped short of saying that the game was responsible for everything.

"What we don’t know is whether improvement is solely because of improved compliance, ie the child sticks with the patch more, or whether there is a physiological improvement from perceptual visual learning," Nischal said.

Anyhow, that's one good deed for the DS to write down today. What has your PlayStation Portable done for the world lately?

Are you surprised to hear about Ben's results? Do you think games should be used in more types of therapy? Share your opinions in the comment section below.