03. tbl. 102. árg. 2016

Visits of patients with exertional rhabdomyolysis to the Emergency Department at Landspítali, The National University of Iceland in the years 2008-2012

Komur á bráðamóttöku Landspítala vegna áreynslurákvöðvarofs árin 2008-2012

Introduction: Overexertion and too much training are among the ­multiple etiologies of rhabdomyolysis. Creatine kinase (CK) and myo­globine, released from skeletal muscle cells, are useful for diagnosis and follow-up. Acute kidney injury is a serious complication of myoglobinemia. Literature on exertional rhabdomyolysis in the general population is scarce. The aim of this study was to investigate the epidemiology of exertional rhabdomyolysis among patients diagnosed at Landspítali The National University Hospital of Iceland  in 2008-2012.

Materials and methods: The study was retrospective and observational. All patients presenting with muscle pain after exertion and elevated creatine kinase >1000 IU/L, during the period from 1 January 2008 to 31 December 2012, were included. Patients with CK elevations secondary to causes other than exertion were excluded. Variables included: patient number and gender, CK-levels, date of hospital admission, cause of rhabdomyolysis, location of injured muscle groups, length of hospital stay, complications and means of fluid replacement. Population figures of the capital region were gathered from Statistics Iceland and information on sport practice in the capital region from The National Olympic and Sports Association of Iceland.

Results: Exertional rhabdomyolysis was diagnosed in 54 patients, 18 females (33,3%) and 36 males (66,7%), or 8,3% of rhabdomyolysis cases from all causes in the study period (648 cases). Incidence in the capital region was 5,0/100.000 inhabitants per year in the study period. Median age was 28 years and median CK-level was 24.132 IU/L. CK-levels were higher among females but the difference between genders was not significant. Muscle groups of the upper and lower extremities were most frequently affected (89%). Thirty patients received intravenous fluids. They had significantly higher CK values than other patients. One patient developed acute kidney injury. Information on sport practice and physical training in the capital region was not available.

Conclusion: Exertional rhabdomyolysis is uncommon but mostly affects younger people. Information on the practice of exertion among males and females is not available but CK-levels were not significantly different between genders, age groups or different muscle groups. CK-levels were high but complications uncommon. Studies of exertional rhabdomyolysis in the general population are lacking.

Table I. Number of patients by sex, age, year of onset, body region and fluid resuscitation.

Table II. CK-elevation by sex, age, year of onset, body region and fluid resuscitation.

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