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How does a peak flow meter work?

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The peak flow meter works by measuring how fast air comes out of the lungs when you exhale forcefully after inhaling fully. This measure is called a "peak expiratory flow," or "PEF." Keeping track of your PEF, is one way you can know if your symptoms of asthma are in control or getting worse.

From: Asthma and the Peak Flow Meter WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology: "Peak Flow Meter: Tips to Remember." 

American Lung Association: "Measuring Your Peak Flow Rate."

MedlinePlus: "How to use your peak flow meter."

Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America: "Peak Flow Meters."

Reviewed by Dan Brennan on August 18, 2019

SOURCES:

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology: "Peak Flow Meter: Tips to Remember." 

American Lung Association: "Measuring Your Peak Flow Rate."

MedlinePlus: "How to use your peak flow meter."

Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America: "Peak Flow Meters."

Reviewed by Dan Brennan on August 18, 2019

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Why should I use a peak flow meter?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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