Medical Definition of Peak-flow meter

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Peak-flow meter: This hand-held device measures air flow (how fast air is blown out of the lungs). Patients can use peak-flow meters to measure their own air flow regularly.

The use of a peak-flow meter allows patients to obtain a much earlier indication of an oncoming attack, for example, of exercise-induced asthma, a type of asthma typically triggered by exercise.

The "peak flow" refers to the maximum flow rate of air breathed out during forced expiration.

Reviewed on 9/7/2018

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors