Respiratory System

Respiration and Breathing

What is the volume of air in the lungs?

The total volume of air the lungs of an average young adult can hold, also called total lung capacity (TLC), is 5,800 milliliters. This is the combination of the vital capacity (VC) (4,600 milliliters) and the residual volume (RV) (1,200 milliliters). The vital capacity is the maximum volume of air that can be exhaled after taking the deepest breath possible. The residual volume is the volume of air that remains in the lungs even after maximal expiration.


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