Don’t Blame Creatine


The big story is that 19 players from McMinnville HS in Oregon were hospitalized with elevated levels of creatine kinase. The bigger story is that the folks in the media hear creatine and blame the supplement the players might have been taking.

No one blames the idiot Coach who had the players indoors in the wrestling room exercising in 115 degree heat. Must be the supplements. How about rhabdomyolysis? Guess what one of the primary symptoms is? Elevated levels of creatine kinase.

Maybe someone should ask the coach what went on in the wrestling room?

According to MedicineNet.com:

“Rhabdomyolysis (RAB-DOE-MY-O-LIE-SIS) is the rapid destruction of skeletal muscle resulting in leakage into the urine of the muscle protein myoglobin.”

“Myoglobin is a protein component of the muscle cells that is released into the blood when the skeletal muscle is destroyed in rhabdomyolysis. Creatine kinase is an enzyme (a protein that facilitates chemical reactions in the body) also in the muscle cells. The level of each of these proteins can be measured in blood to monitor the degree of muscle injury from rhabdomyolysis.” Myoglobin can also be measured in samples of urine.”

It is amazing how quick we are to blame a supplement that actually has a pretty good track record for safety. Writers need to do a little research before “reporting”.

14 Responses to “Don’t Blame Creatine”

  1. mboyle1959 Says:

    I was thinking about this today. This “creatine vs creatine kinase” mistake is like confusing hydrogen and hydrogen peroxide. Does that fact that the words are the same means the substances are the same?

  2. Typically lazy media “drive by”. Make an uninformed assumption then move one. Tie between the reporter and the coach for Idiotarian Award.

  3. Mike,
    Amen. Reminds me of the story in Sports Illustrated, which you would think would know better, ran a recent story on Michael Phelps asking what’s wrong with him because he isn’t dominating swimming currently. They have no clue about peaking, training cycles, recovery, etc. yet put out these headlines merely to garner readership. Ridiculous!

  4. Further to your point Coach, here’s a good read about creatine from ISSN: http://www.jissn.com/content/4/1/6. The only thing I can think of is that if they were using creatine but doing it in doses that were way too high in combination with excessive training in excessive heat – probably without hydration, then I would imagine it would play a part. But the problem would still be the person who’s administering too much, and providing too intense of a workout in dangerous conditions. It will be interesting to see the test results. Wasn’t it last year that a HS football player died from working out too hard in ridiculously hot conditions? In light of that, you’d think the media would focus on the 115 degree training room instead of the supplements.

  5. What we’re seeing is long term ramifications of the scare tactics of those too lazy to do their job and read a little research before dispensing misinformation. Where is Pual Chek when we need him?

    Regards,
    Carson Boddicker

  6. So far they are calling it compartment syndrome – compression of the nerves, and blood vessels within an enclosed space. Yes, they need to take into account the heat, training, and dehyration.

    People always want to blame supplements first. However, this does look like Rhabdomyolysis. I also heard Albert Haynesworth is also allegedly suffering from this.

    We will see what more blood tests reveal. I sure hope the doctors don’t pin it on Creatine.

  7. albert haynesworth

  8. Great point, coach.

    Reminds me of a local high school coach telling his football team that creatine supplements would shrink their balls.

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