Transient oliguria with renal tubular dysfunction after a 90 km running race

Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1990 Dec;22(6):756-61. doi: 10.1249/00005768-199012000-00004.


In the course of a 19-d study of renal function in five ultramarathon runners, before, during and after a 90 km race, one runner developed transient oliguria with renal tubular dysfunction and anuria during and immediately after the race. Other features of the renal failure were an 84-fold increase in urine beta 2-microglobulin excretion (from 0.19 to 16.0 micrograms.min-1) and a much smaller increase in urine total protein excretion (from 0.07 to 0.18 mg.min-1) during the post-race period. Post-race creatinine clearance remained below pre-race levels throughout the study, varying between 42.8 and 72.9 ml.min-1, in contrast to the post-race 49% increase in the remaining runners (from 138.1 +/- 12.9 to 205.5 +/- 59.9 ml.min-1). Osmolal clearance also remained low (0.31 to 0.98 ml.min-1) compared with the pre-race values (1.46 +/- 0.02 ml.min-1), as did the urine flow rates (0.11 to 0.18 ml.min-1) compared with the pre-race values (0.34 +/- 0.02 ml.min-1). This renal dysfunction persisted despite the patient receiving 2 l of intravenous fluids immediately after the race and probably resulted from fluid restriction during the race. There was full recovery of renal function 1 yr later when the subject again ran the Comrades Marathon.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Female
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate / physiology
  • Humans
  • Kidney Tubules / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Oliguria / etiology*
  • Oliguria / physiopathology
  • Physical Endurance
  • Proteinuria / etiology
  • Running*
  • beta 2-Microglobulin / urine


  • beta 2-Microglobulin