Lots of blood in urine/ hematuria after race

After a long race 2 weeks ago I experienced quite a bad case of blood in the urine or gross/frank hematuria (as I since discovered is the medical term).

Basically I think I passed lots of dead red blood cells and have not had any visible blood in my urine since however, even 2 weeks after the race I am constantly tired, need much more sleep than usual and any physical activity is much more difficult that usual. This would make sense if my body needs to replenish those red blood cell stocks. I've added extra greens and iron tablets too my diet and I already take plenty of other vitamins and eat well.

I'm wondering if anyone else has had a similar problem? How long does the body take to recover from this? Is there anything I can do to help the recovery?


  • Hi RT,

    Although fairly uncommon, it's not necessarily of great medical significance to get visible blood in your urine after an unusually strenuous bout of distance running, like a long gruelling race, especially if it's only happened to you the one time.

    But it does suggest that your body took a major hit on that day, for whatever reason - and you have probably not recovered sufficiently - which may well be the most likely explanation of your current symptoms - this could of course also be symptomatic of overtraining syndrome - but only you will know if you're doing too much.

    The amount of visible blood loss would not have been sufficient to cause these symptoms on it's own - your body can cope with much more significant blood loss before such symptoms develop - ask any runner who gives blood regularly.

    However, while it is likely that this is all quite benign, or indeed simply an indication that you are just overcooking things a bit, haematuria (which is not always visible to the naked eye) can also be a sign of something far more serious, so I suggest you exercise caution and go see your GP to get some blood and urine tests done as soon as convenient.

    Regards, Groz.

  • I'd definitely see my gp.
  • Flat FootedFlat Footed ✭✭✭
    Seconded or thirded if that exists
  • I'm back up to normal pace about a week after giving blood so to not feel good two weeks later would worry me.
  • Thank's a lot for the replies and info. Much appreciated.

    Groz: I think you're right in terms of the big hit, I pissed out a LOT of dark red but sure the body can able to handle bigger losses. That was the reason for the confusion and I couldn't find anything on the net about the after issues of tiredness. It's felt like I've been staying at altitude for the last two weeks.

    I'm back home in a couple of weeks so I'll see a doc then if things haven't improved and take it easy this week.

    FF + Cougie: Cheers!

    regards, RT
  • I'd be worried that if you're still tired - are you somehow losing blood somewhere else ? It's probably nothing but I don't think I'd want to wait another fortnight ?
  • Could you have a infection ? that can happen if you have an UTI
  • Hi RT -

    This was probably myoglobinuria - rather than haemoglobinuria/haematuria - caused by muscle breakdown products in the urine which do look very like blood and even test positive for blood on the dipsticks (although if your GP sent a sample to the lab to look under the microscope they would see differently). Rhabdomyolysis (muscle breakdown) is not uncommon after long races and is a classic exam question re marathon runners!

    If you are still feeling rough two weeks on now you need to see your GP SOON - they will send a urine sample (although it's probably a bit late now) and do blood tests for kidney function, blood count and CK (one of the breakdown products). Most likely all of the tests will have gone back to normal by now and your fatigue is not linked, but it would be as well to check.

    If it happens again after a long race, go to your local A&E and do the tests straight away - much more likely to yield a diagnosis (although be warned if positive they will probably keep you in for observation, your call!)
  • Hi Sybarite,

    Thanks for the detailed answer and apologies for a late reply..
    I will take your advice next time I see something similar happen and make sure I see a doctor quickly for some tests.

    Luckily this time was all OK and started to get energy back to normal by week 3 and all is OK now.

    I have another similar race in a few weeks so I'll monitor the "output" after the race.

    Thanks to everyone for the replies, I was a little concerned due to teh slow recovery and because I'm often away from home, it's not so simple just to have a quick appointment with the doc.

  • Consult Doctor!! You should intake liquid as much as possible. Take Care!!
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