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Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1989 Oct;21(5 Suppl):S219-21.

Dehydration and hyponatremia during triathlons.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Hawaii, Honolulu 96882.


In ultraendurance triathlons, dehydration and electrolyte balance are important factors in race completion and level of performance. Dehydration is the most common reason for a triathlete in the Hawaii Ironman Triathlon to need medical assistance. Hyponatremia is the predominant electrolyte disturbance. We have previously described exercise-induced hyponatremia and documented its incidence as a function of race length and state of hydration. This syndrome, dehydration plus hyponatremia, is extremely rare in races lasting less than 4 h but becomes common in races lasting longer than 8 h. Recommendations are made to help ultraendurance athletes understand and maintain proper fluid and electrolyte balance.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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