Rhabdomyolysis Treatments

Rhabdomyolysis is treatable and patients may recover quickly if the disease is caught in its early stages. However, if left untreated, acute kidney failure develops in 30-40% of patients.

The classic symptoms of rhabdomyolysis include myalgia (muscle pain), weakness, and darkened urine.
If the symptoms (more>>) are present, a doctor well perform several tests.


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Rhabdomyolosis

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Rhabdomyolysis is treatable and patients may recover quickly if the disease is caught in its early stages. However, if left untreated, acute kidney failure develops in 30-40% of patients.
The classic symptoms of rhabdomyolysis include myalgia (muscle pain), weakness, and darkened urine.
If the symptoms (more>>) are present, a doctor well perform several tests.

Diagnosis

A definitive diagnosis is made by laboratory tests including:

Creatine kinase (CK) testing. This is considered the most useful and widely available blood test.If the patients CK levels are elevated above normal, it may (or may not) indicate rhabdomyolysis. If the CK levels are in excess of 2-3 times what they should be a doctor will order further tests. If the CK are nearly100 times above normal or even higher, rhabdomyolysis is very likely. The test will be conducted several times and if the CK level does not decrease there may be ongoing muscle injury.

Urine tests will measure the amounts of hemoglobin or myoglobin. If blood is in the urine, but with few red blood cells suggests rhabdomyolysis.

Treatment

Early and aggressive hydration may prevent complications from rhabdomyolysis by rapidly eliminating the myoglobin from the kidneys. This may involve intravenous administration of several liters of fluid until the condition stabilizes. Diuretics such as mannitol or furosemide may aid in flushing the iron-containing pigment out of the kidneys. If the patient produces sufficient urine a doctor may administer bicarbonate, which can prevent the myoglobin from breaking down into toxic compounds within the kidney.

The human body contains two kidneys, each of which process waste before sending the waste to the bladder as urine. When kidney or renal failure develops, the kidney becomes unable to properly process this waste. Depending on the severity of the failure, a patient may have to undergo dialysis, a procedure that takes the blood out of the body and sends it into a dialysis machine. The machine, in lieu of the kidney, filters the waste products from the blood. Severe cases of renal failure may require a kidney transplant.

Summary

Rhabdomyolysis is a potentially lethal syndrome with a broad spectrum of causes and symptoms. The clinical symptoms vary widely from myalgia to severe muscle weakness with involvement of other organ symptoms. Alcoholism, drugs, toxins, strenuous exercise, infections and metabolic disturbances represent the most common factors in acquired rhabdomyolysis. In hereditary rhabdomyolysis, exercise usually triggers the condition. Acute renal failure, compartment syndrome and cardiac arrest represent some of the major complications of the rhabdomyolysis.

The treatment in the acute phase of rhabdomyolysis consists of maintaining adequate hydration and urine production in order to prevent renal complications. While the prognosis of timely and adequately treated rhabdomyolysis is excellent, severe and long lasting complications may result in cases where the patient does not receive proper treatment early enough.





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