MRC dyspnoea scale

Last edited 02/2021 and last reviewed 02/2021

Medical Research Council dyspnoea scale for grading the degree of a patient's breathlessness

  • 1. I only get breathless with strenuous exercise
  • 2. I get short of breath when hurrying on level ground or walking up a slight hill
  • 3. On level ground, I walk slower than people of the same age because of breathlessness, or I have to stop for breath when walking at my own pace on the level
  • 4. I stop for breath after walking about 100 yards or after a few minutes on level ground
  • 5. I am too breathless to leave the house or I am breathless when dressing or undressing

This scale does not measure breathlessness itself, but the disability caused by breathlessness (1).