Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Health Administration


College of Health Professions

First Advisor

Kit N. Simpson

Second Advisor

Sandra S. Brotherton

Third Advisor

B. J. Smith

Fourth Advisor

Lisa K. Saladin


Ultra running, a sport that consists of races above the marathon marker of 26.2 miles, has rarely been studied in depth. Little peer-reviewed scientific information examines the morbidity or disease prevalence associated with long-distance ultrarunning. Furthermore, there is an increase in reports of rhabdomyolysis within the ultrarunning community, which may coincide with an increase in the demand for long-distance ultrarunning races. This study examined the rate of hospital or emergency room admissions with a diagnosis of rhabdomyolysis and assesses if the incidence of rhabdomyolysis events in young males parallels the growth of ultrarunning. We hypothesized that: • ED diagnoses of rhabdomyolysis in young adult males parallel the growth in ultrarunning. • There are geographic and seasonal variations in the population rate of ER, which correspond to locations and times where most training for ultrarunning events occurs. A regression test to trend the races & rhabdomyolysis frequencies/rates over time was conducted using patient data from NIS database and racing data from Our research has demonstrated a rise in the rates of rhabdomyolysis that mirror the rise of long-distance ultra running in young adult males.


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