A simple and inherently safe test of pulmonary function following exercise. Formal testing consists of measuring pulmonary function before and after 5–8 min of vigorous exercise on a treadmill at 90% of predicted maximum heart rate. Informal tests are often conducted outdoors where the subject runs as hard as possible, or at a pace that usually precipitates an asthmatic attack, for about 3–4 min. Measurements are made of the peak expiratory flow or forced expiratory volume for 1 min (PEF1 or FEV1) at 5, 10, and 15-min intervals after exercise. A significant fall in values at any time is abnormal, and a fall of 15% or more indicates a diagnosis of exercise-induced asthma. As all asthmatics develop bronchospasm after exercise, the test can also be valuable where there is doubt about the diagnosis of mild asthma.
Subjects: Sports and Exercise Medicine.