Variability in Peak Flows

Hi Guys,

I just wondered how variable other people's peak flow results tend to be from day to day. Mine can go from 150-200 when my asthma is most symptomatic, to 350-400 average, to 450-500 on a really good day. My predicted is 590. Does anyone manage to hit there predicted/expected result?

Also, do you think you could get better PF results by practicing?

Would appreciate your comments.

Gareth

14 Replies

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  • Peak flows that vary by less than 20% indicate good control. So if you get variation by more than that then you need to discuss it with your doctor/nurse.

    I think there was a thread discussing something very similar recently I will see if I can bump it for you.

    Bryony

  • Hi Gareth.

    I never go by what they say is the predict peak-flow. I have a personal best of 430-450 and recently I have been ranging from as low as 180 up to my PB of 450. Everyday is different and the variability of peak flows just goes to show the difference in your lung capacity on a daily basic. Follow your asthma action plan and if you don't have one make an appointment to see your asthma nurse and work one out with the nurse as they are amazing. I now I can go to step 4 with out seeing my GP unless I am having trouble even with following the action plan. The action plan also means that I can change my dosage and now that this is what the doctor would say to me to do and then when I get to the point where I need steroids that is when I go to the doctor. Keep a record of your peak flow and I would recommended the peak-flow dairy that you can order from asthma UK because you can mark when you are having issues in the night, during the day, if your asthma affects you while doing day to day activities

  • I've bumped that thread it is under 'general'.

  • Hi

    My peak flow is really variable. My personal best is 500 (predicted about 430), but when I am relatively ""well"" it will vary on a daily basis from around 200/220 to 460 or thereabouts. This week has been really awful as I am having an exacerbation and it has been consistently between 200 and about 230 and I have been struggling. My GP thinks I have brittle asthma, but I have yet to be given a diagnosis officially. I find it difficult to judge when I should be going to A&E or GP as I would be there every week if I followed my action plan to the letter. I am planning to ask for a revised plan soon.

    Valerie

  • I now have very little room for variablilty! my best in the last yr is 290 but in the last 4 months i havent been over 200 im currently running at about 160 best!!!

    But peeps dont worry and please dont think it is ok to be that low i have brittle asthma types1 and 2 lung damage plus heart problems they are now starting to think i may be developing COPD.

    It is true that if you have a big variablilty then you maynot be optimnumly controlled so a tripto the asthma nurse is advised.

  • Thanks for your comments and many thanks for Byrony, finding the other thread under 'General Forum' - the contents were useful and I appreciate you for taking your time to bump the thread.

    I've never gone higher than my predicted Peak Flow- owww, the luxury if I could! hahaha

    I managed to get 490 on my pf today, which is the highest I've had for ages - don't recall getting higher in fact! I have a formal lung function test next week (Spirometry etc), so it will be interesting to see what the results will be!

    Gareth

    Hope you're all well x

  • Hi

    my peak flows used to be 380, then they went down to 320. They have now dropped to 260 and see saw all over the place but seemed to have settled around 220. But this is cos i'm off work at the moment. When i go back to work it'll see saw again, if the weather gets very humid my p/flows drop to 160 .The nurses say i havent got copd and dont think its heart probs, but gps got the bit between their teeth over this. So got to have another test to totally rule this out, the nurse has finally agreed my asthma isnt under control but havent sorted out my meds.

    sj

  • hi-my peak flow when done at home is usually around about 250ish but i know from past experience that it can dip morning and night or if im having a bad day. i do get higher when doing the blowing test at hosp-not sure why cos i blow the same breath lol....i do think that with practice you can improve your reading. as long as i get over 250 i know im ok, if i dip below 200 im meant to contact my gp or the aras team and if it goes under 150 ive got to go to hosp, but i dont really check mine all the time so cant give any more advice about predicted sorry x

  • hi-my peak flow when done at home is usually around about 250ish but i know from past experience that it can dip morning and night or if im having a bad day. i do get higher when doing the blowing test at hosp-not sure why cos i blow the same breath lol....i do think that with practice you can improve your reading. as long as i get over 250 i know im ok, if i dip below 200 im meant to contact my gp or the aras team and if it goes under 150 ive got to go to hosp, but i dont really check mine all the time so cant give any more advice about predicted sorry x

  • I guess we're all different and our personal best will vary from person to person. I know my partner (who doesn't have asthma), has a predicted PF of 630 but can only blow 450. That reassures me somewhat! lol

    Wolfspirit - my PF drops really bad during humid weather too - and it's been very muggy/humid this year. Maybe that's partly explains why some of us have had it so bad this year. I dunno. It's a mystery sometimes. I was really happy today, as I was able to blow 490! WOWSERS! I shouldn't run before I can walk though and I'm constantly blowing on my PF - I'm sure I'll give myself another attack if I don't calm down!

    Gareth

  • My PB is 550 well above my predicted 470 but a drop in PF doesn't correlate to my symptoms. I can be at 400 and feel fine yet have nelly on my chest at 480. I've given up checking PF if I feel bad and only measure morning and night now. Averaging 480-510 at the mo.

  • Hi,

    At the moment my Peakflow is only measuring from 120 to 250.

    On a better day I can sometimes get it to 300.

    My best peakflow is 350 but I have not had it to that for ages.

  • My pb was 450, but that was done years ago, (I should apparently hit 550, but have never managed that!!). I have not hit my pb in the last couple of years but I have found my asthma has got a lot worse and with each admission I have my highest pf level plumets more. I find my pf stays stable around 300-320, mega good day is 350 but that is incredibly rare unless fully loaded with nebs at the hospital, but I cant maintain it. I normally start to feel rough when pf sinks to 250, really rough is anything below, everything becomes a major struggle. Just trying to get out of bed pretty much has me breathless and on my knees. My lowest reading was a few weeks ago and that hit 150, for those of you on that level regularly I feel for you. The green men couldnt wait to get shot of me at ane that day lol. The thing that gets me is that you can get your shall we say normal pf yet be getting all your syptoms, I have had that so many times and ended up in hospital, so for me I never allow my pf to guide how well I am doing. As for practising, no chance, I hate doing it in the 1st place lol.

  • My best is 360 though I've only hit that twice. My readings tend to be in the less than 320 bracket which would appear to place me in sector 3. Though I've had no hosp admissions nor any recurring attacks like some of the folk on here. For the last two - three months I've been a steady and unvarying 300.

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