It was hotter than expected on Marathon Monday, and there may have been more charity or first-time runners than usual. Both these things could help explain why almost 4,000 runners and a few spectators walked or were wheeled into a medical tent along the course.
The Mecca Of Marathon Medicine
As temperatures rose above 70 degrees and the sun blazed, Clyde Dickey, from Rockwall, Texas, said he downed too much Gatorade.
“I just threw up a little bit, and I felt faint” as I crossed the finish line, Dickey said. “I thought I had heat exhaustion. I gave [the race] all I had, but the heat just got to me.”
Dickey was underground, waiting for the T when the bombs went off last year and regrets that he wasn’t able to help those wounded. He added Boston TV stations to his cable package so he could watch all the specials in the year since.
“I love coming here,” Dickey said. “This is the mecca of marathons.”
And perhaps the mecca of marathon medicine. So when a guy from Michigan, who trained all winter in 20-degree weather, collapsed at the finish line, a volunteer scooped him into a wheelchair and had him on a cot with an IV in his arms within minutes. Another volunteer caught a woman from Washington, D.C., who started spinning as she slowed down.
“I wasn’t quite expecting it but today we saw quite a bit of hyperthermia, people overheating,”
said Dr. Pierre d’Hemecourt, one of the marathon’s medical directors. He said the tents, which were larger with more staff and equipment than last year, were busy most of the day.
“Most of [the activity] being relatively minor, dehydration, things like musculoskeletal complaints,” d’Hemecourt said. “So overall it’s been a pretty good day.”
Which, in contrast to last year, was a relief for many of the doctors, nurses and other volunteers who staffed the medical tents. Continue reading