Valsalva maneuver

[ val-sal-vuh ]
/ vælˈsæl və /


a forced expiratory effort against a closed glottis that decreases intrathoracic pressure, hampering venous return to the heart, and that can be used to inflate the Eustachian tubes and adjust pressure in the middle ear.

Origin of Valsalva maneuver

named after Antonio M. Valsalva (1666–1723), Italian anatomist who devised the maneuver Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Medicine definitions for valsalva maneuver

Valsalva maneuver
[ văl-sălvə ]


Expiratory effort against a closed glottis, which increases pressure within the thoracic cavity and thereby impedes venous return of blood to the heart. The maneuver results in changes in blood pressure and heart rate and is used in conjunction with other tests to diagnose cardiac abnormalities and to treat various conditions, especially some abnormal heart rhythms.
Expiratory effort when the mouth is closed and the nostrils are pinched shut, which forces air into the eustachian tubes and increases pressure on the inside of the eardrum.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.