Pharmacy Clinical Pearl of the Day: COPD and FEV1/FVC


Forced exhalation volume in one second and forced vital capacity can determine the stage severity for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Clinical Pearl of the Day: COPD and forced exhalation volume in 1 second (FEV1)/forced vital capacity (FVC).

FEV1 and FEV1/FVC can determine the stage severity for COPD disease.


  • The above stages can be determined based on the FEV1/FVC ratio, as well as FEV1 numbers.
  • FEV1: volume expired in the first second of maximal expiration after a maximal inspiration.
  • FEV1/FVC: FEV1 expressed as a percentage of the FVC, gives a clinically useful index of airflow limitation.


Microsoft Word - Spirometric Classifications of COPD.doc (

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