The hundreds of miles and hours of training required in order to run a marathon can take its toll on the body. If you don’t believe me, check out this fun fact: up to 85% of long distance runners have blood in their stool, and 16 percent complain of bloody diarrhea. Fatalities from running a marathon can be due to dehydration, renal failure, heat stroke, hyponatremia, acute coronary syndrome, and ischemic colitis. (see reference below)
Moving on… The dangers of over-exertion during training and the main event can lead to serious injury or death. Korean scientists at the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute are touting their new entry into the world of wearable medgadgets: the Bio-Shirt. Here’s an excerpt from an article in the Korea Times:
The BioShirt is composed of two parts: a specially designed shirt and a monitoring system that weighs about just 20 grams including a battery.
The battery life is roughly three and a half hours but it will be prolonged to approximately five hours, the average running time of recreational marathoners.
“Next year, people wearing BioShirt will be able to know their temperatures, heart rates and speeds while running on a real-time basis using a wristwatch-type miniature computer enabled by Bluetooth,” Kim said.
“When any of the three data types hits a ceiling configured in advance, a warning sign will let marathoners know it is time to stop running and take a rest,” Kim said.
It’s about time these med-fashions are becoming somewhat fashionable (flashback: Lifeshirt). The parameters monitored by the shirt should theoretically reduce incidences of heat stroke, heat exhaustion, and cardiac events during training and events. We’ll just have to wait and see.
(Hat tip: Engadget)
Reference: Medical problems of marathon runners