Inspiratory Reserve Volume – The amount of air that can be breathed in after normal inhalation
In order to remember what inspiratory reserve volume is, it will be necessary to break the words down to their different part meanings as follows:
1. We know that spira means breathing.
Spira = Breathing
2. So inspira refers to breathing in.
3. In this context, reserve refers to an additional supply. For example a pilot with an additional reserve fuel tank for their plane. This would not be used unless called upon on a long journey.
4. Reserve volume therefore refers to the additional volume of air.
So if we combine inspiratory reserve volume we get:
Breathing in, additional volume of air.
In other words inspiratory reserve volume means:
The amount of additional air that can be breathed in on top of normal breathing.
The amount of air that can be forcibly inhaled beyond a tidal inhalation is about 3,000ml or 3 litres for men and 2,000ml or 2 litres for women.