Assessment of respiratory function
To find out how well children breathe, we use various age-appropriate tests.
As the younger children are able to sniff, breathing skills can be assessed early by the Sniff test (which assesses the maximum inspiratory pressure during sniffing). Likewise, since coughing is a simple exercise, airway clearance abilities can be investigated by the peak expiratory flow rate at coughing.
In older children, the spirometry measurement of respiratory capacity and inspiratory and expiratory pressures allows a better understanding of pulmonary function.
These values are recorded using a computer and are compared with the theoretical values of a healthy child of the same age. This makes it possible to monitor changes in lung capacity and assess the need for the installation of a ventilation machine or respiratory rehabilitation and relief tools such as the pressure relaxer, percussionist or cough assist.