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Swimming Induced Pulmonary Edema in Triathletes: A Deadly Threat

An article titled Why I Also Almost Died During the 2012 New York City Ironman Triathlon does a great job detailing the signs and symptoms of Swimming Induced Pulmonary Edema (SIPE). This condition continues to be one of the most common causes of death in long-course triathlons. (e.g., Ironman 140.6 and Ironman 70.3)

The author describes SIPE nicely:

“The physiology involves a pooling of the body’s blood into the core, and when there is an overload of blood circulation in the core, the weakest link is usually the lung’s capillaries so the blood leaks into the lungs. The risk then is of a deprivation of oxygen supply, which at first is just exhausting to the person — and ultimately causes cardiac arrest.”

We encourage all our athletes that participate in triathlon to familiarize themselves with this condition, it might save your life!

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