Parents are demanding action after several high school students were hospitalised when their sports coach allegedly instructed them to perform nearly 400 push-ups as punishment.
Authorities in the US state of Texas are investigating after the off-season football workout led to several squad members being diagnosed with the potentially-fatal condition rhabdomyolysis, where a damaging protein is released into the blood, local news outlet WFAA reported.
The boys' coach at Rockwall-Heath High School has been placed on administrative leave while investigations are ongoing.
Osehotue Okojie said her 15-year-old son was one of the children instructed to perform the push-ups. She said every time a member of the group made a mistake in the training session, they were told to perform 16 push-ups.
"[My son] was unable to lift his arms and his urine was a brown colour," Dr Okojie, a local physician, told WFAA.
"I immediately knew those were signs and symptoms. It's a very serious condition. It can lead to cardiac complications, kidney failure, and even dialysis.
"I was concerned that other athletes might not even recognise what's happening to them."
Her son spent several days in hospital before being released. She fears there could be long-term complications for the students, predicting up to 19 were affected altogether.
Mum wants parents to be educated on serious issue
The coach has yet to comment on the matter however Dr Okojie says she has spoken to him, and claims he was unaware of rhabdomyolysis and its symptoms.
Dr Okojie said she was "appalled" something like this could happen and urged schools to educate parents on the seriousness of rhabdomyolysis.
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services are leading the investigations into the matter.
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