Definitions & Treatment

Definition of Asthma | Exercise-Induced Asthma | Diagnosing Children | Pulmonary Function Tests | Allergy Testing | Treating Allergies & Asthma | Environmental Controls | Allergy Injections | Medications Conclusions

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Office: 440-333-2003

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20455 Lorain Road, Suite T3
Fairview Park, Ohio 44126

Pulmonary Function Tests

The Pulmonary Function Test is a very important test of the lung's capacity and the ability to exhale air. The machine is much more sensitive than a stethoscope and can actually help us determine how close the lungs are to normal. It is extremely helpful when the chest is clear, when neither the patient nor the doctor can pick up any wheezing. Since the pulmonary function machine is more sensitive, it can pick up minor or moderate defects in the lung.

After having the patient blow into this machine, we frequently have them breathe in some asthma medication and then repeat the lung test. The exciting thing with asthma is the reversibility; that is, unlike emphysema, where there is actual destruction of the lung, asthma is usually reversible.

If pulmonary function tests are decreased, they can frequently be returned to normal.

The pulmonary functions tests also help in determining the effectiveness of the medication and also help to determine when we might be able to decrease and, at times, stop the medication.

I might add that for patients under four years of age, we do not perform pulmonary function tests.