Do you frequently experience a shortness of breath? Are you concerned about how your lungs are functioning? Spirometry is a diagnostic tool that helps measure various aspects of your lungs and how they function. This test can help determine what may be a larger issue on hand. Learn more during a consultation with Columbia Asthma & Allergy Clinic at one of our convenient locations in California, Oregon, or Washington.
What Is Spirometry?
Spirometry is a diagnostic test performed to measure and analyze lung function. It can help diagnose or monitor a variety of conditions that affect breathing, such as:
- Chronic bronchitis
- COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
- Pulmonary fibrosis
Spirometry measures breathing based on two different values: forced vital capacity (FVC) and forced expiratory volume (FEV). FVC measures the amount of how forcefully you are able to exhale after breathing deeply. FEV measures how much are you are able to force from your lungs in one second. Healthy levels vary by age, height, and sex, but lower levels typically indicate obstruction in your lungs, altering breathing.
What Could I Expect from a Test?
Spirometry tests are performed in the comfort of our clinics. Sitting up straight in a chair, you will breathe into a tube attached to a spirometer. Nostrils are closed with a small clip to ensure accurate measurements of lung function. It is important that you breathe deeply, inhaling and exhaling as hard as you are able to for a few seconds.
The series of breathing will likely be repeated for a few times to ensure consistent results for the best diagnosis. If results seem skewed, it is possible to be given bronchodilator, a medicine to help open the lungs, to assist with breathing for better diagnosis.
Experiencing mild feelings of dizziness, coughing, or shortness of breath is common. It is important to communicate with the practitioner about how you are feeling. The testing process typically takes less than 15 minutes, and diagnoses or recommendations based on FVC and FEV should be available to you shortly. You should be able to return to your normal daily activities following a spirometry test.
Am I a Good Candidate?
Spirometry testing can help nearly anyone concerned about their lung and respiratory health. Not only can it be a beneficial diagnostic tool, but it can also help you monitor your health and the effectiveness of your current treatment. A consultation with our team at one of our clinics can help determine if this short and relatively simple test can help you gain the insight you want for your health!
Schedule Your Consultation!
If you are interested in learning more about how your lung capacity and function may be affecting your breathing, contact us today! Schedule your consultation to discuss spirometry with Columbia Asthma & Allergy Clinic at one of our locations in California, Oregon, or Washington.