Determinations of vital capacity, heretofore utilized chiefly by physiologists or restricted to the study of serious cardiac or pulmonary disabilities, are now finding a wider application. The ease with which this accurate information is accumulated has greatly facilitated the dissemination of its practical value.
The determination of the vital capacity of any given patient is clearly one method of appraising the condition present. Any disorder which affects the cardiovascular or respiratory systems reduces the vital capacity. Such determinations may be of use not only in the diagnosis of these cardiorespiratory afflictions, but they also may be of assistance in determining the fitness of any given person. This may be utilized in surgical procedures to appraise the ability of a patient to withstand an operation. Since so many operations of today are those of election, the acquisition of this information seems desirable. Accurate knowledge of pulmonary and cardiac reserve energy might
POWERS JH. VITAL CAPACITY: ITS SIGNIFICANCE IN RELATION TO POSTOPERATIVE PULMONARY COMPLICATIONS. Arch Surg. 1928;17(2):304–323. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1928.01140080134008
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