It’s obvious to believe that marathon races lead to heart attack or sudden death, owing to the stupendous amount of physical activity involved in the process. However, a new study conducted by scientists at John Hopkins Medicine showed that chances of death during or immediately after the race are apparently low for marathoners.
The belief that runners may die soon after the marathon or during the race could discourage people from participating in it. Running is beneficial in many ways, while the risk of dying from it is seemingly negligible. As part of the study, investigators analyzed medical reports of marathon participants between 2000 and 2009.
“It’s very dramatic when someone dies on the course, but it’s not common. There are clearly many health benefits associated with running. It doesn’t make you immune, but your risk of dying from running a marathon is very, very low,” commented Julius Cuong Pham, M.D., Ph.D., an associate professor of emergency medicine and anesthesiology and critical care medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and leader of the study.
According to what was observed, almost 28 persons who were mostly men died during or within 24 hours of the event. Moreover, most of the people in this group died due to heart disease. In case of young runners, conditions like hyponatremia and cardiac arrhythmia seemed to be the causes. Hyponatremia is a condition that occurs among people drinking excessive water at any time during races.
The team believed that marathon running could be associated with many health benefits like low risk of diabetes, high blood pressure and diabetes. However, marathons cannot be considered completely risk-free, the investigators cautioned.