The McGill Physiology Virtual Lab

Respiration Laboratory

Theory> Ventilatory Function tests: Static Lung Volumes
  Lung volumes that are not affected by the rate of air movement in and out of the lungs are termed static lung volumes. The following five static lung volumes can be measured: VT (tidal volume), IRV (inspiratory reserve volume), ERV (expiratory reserve volume), IC (inspiratory capacity) and VC (vital capacity).
As RV (residual volume) cannot be measured using spirometry or pneumotachometry, neither can FRC (functional residual capacity) nor TLC (total lung capacity). These last three volumes can be determined indirectly, as the FRC (functional residual capacity) can be measured using helium gas dilution techniques.

Click here to test yourself on the static lung volumes using an interactive applet.

To review, study the diagram below.

To continue to the next section: Dynamic Lung Volumes, click here