Rhabdomyolysis - Treatment

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How is rhabdomyolysis treated?

The treatment of rhabdomyolysis depends on its cause and severity.

If a cause for rhabdomyolysis is identified, it is addressed; for example:

  • discontinuing a toxic medication,
  • replacing electrolytes, or
  • treating an underlying muscle disease.

In cases of mild rhabdomyolysis without any evidence of complications, management can take place at home by simply recognizing the cause and correcting it, such as discontinuing a medication and rehydration.

In more severe cases, or if home therapy is not possible, hospitalization may be required. Prompt initiation of hydration with intravenous fluids, in addition to the removal the provoking factor(s), is an essential part of the treatment of rhabdomyolysis. Monitoring and managing kidney dysfunction, correcting any disturbance in the electrolytes, and monitoring the muscle enzyme levels (CPK, SGOT, SGPT, LDH) are most effectively done in the hospital when rhabdomyolysis is severe.

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Comment from: jkchi, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: June 04

I received IV hydration in the hospital for rhabdomyolysis. You shouldn"t expect a lot of sleep once your kidneys start working again. Urination is frequent with large quantities, unless you get a catheter, which I did not need. My CPK levels were 3,000. My potassium was actually low by day 2. I had a general diet but I ordered food with good protein and also fruits to add in adding fluids. My ability to walk slowly improved over 3 days until I was walking normally. After 3 days in the hospital, I went home and drank water, but mostly slept. In 7 days I was feeling pretty normal again. I am 36 years old.

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Comment from: Caro, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: September 23

I was diagnosed with rhabdomyolysis while being treated for shingles; not your best time to have this diagnosis but with my resistance being somewhat low, I began getting low muscle strength and no energy. After seeing my doctor and referred to an internal medicine, I was hospitalized, and put on IV for 4 days until all my blood tests that were through the roof came down. I was taken off all medicines and after day 4 was told never to take statin drugs again. Muscle weakness was prevalent and still is, but with the help of exercise and magnesium supplement, I am regaining strength in my legs. I hope this might help others that have the same affliction.

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