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British Lung Foundation
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What does all the FEV and other no's mean?

Hi all, I have recently seen my COPD nurse and the results of the tests she did were :

FEV 1 0.59 L. FEV1 FVC RATIO 50%

FVC 1.17 L PEAK FLOW 125

I haven't a clue what this all means or if it implies what stage I'm at, and as I'm considering making a claim for attendance allowance would really appreciate any help or advice.

Thanks, celat.

7 Replies
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Hi the Fev1 figure stands for forced expiry Volume and is based on your lung capacity and how much you can breathe out in 1 second. If your fev1 is 50% that is how much lung function you have. This puts you just in the severe category I think. 125 for your peak flow is quite low and backs up the 50%. I am moderate at 66% and my peak flow is around 300. Don't understand the other figures but hope this clarifies it a bit. x


Hi coughalot, thanks for that, it does clarify it for me. I have gone rapidly downhill since November and have been told I should claim attendance allowance to get some help but it's such a minefield I didn't know if they would consider me serious enough to get it. Hey ho, I'll fill the forms in and see what happens! Thanks again, keep on keeping on. X


It can be a bit complicated at first. If you ring the BLF helpline (details if you click the red balloon, top right) during normal office hours they will be able to give you an interpretation and answer any questions it raises. :)

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Thanks Toci, I'll do that and see what they say. Keep well. X


Good Morning - The only one I have any idea of is the FEV1% which I believe is the capacity of your lung function so at 50% - you would have 50% lung function, my husband is about 27%. Firstly I would ring the BLF nurse and ask her professional advise. On a personal note I have never got too hung up about the numbers - according to my husbands he is very severe BUT we still have a great quality of life, a lot slower than most! He is still working full time and we are very lucky. I took the attitude that the numbers only matter to the medics when/if he has a serious exacerbation.

How long have you had COPD? Has anyone talked about pulmonary rehab? Have you have had a pneumonia jab and do you have an annual flu jab? Lots of great strategies to stay well and active! Good luck , TAD xxx



this is a spiro calculator might help?

I will say that the results are more as a comparison as it does seem that we can have a low level and be coping well and a medium and struggling. I have a good O2 conversation but do not get enough in when I need it (when I go past plodding/rest)

Stop smoking and be positive. :)

Be Well


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