Pulmonary function tests (PFTs) are an easy and non-invasive way to diagnose conditions such as COPD and Asthma. They provide helpful information regarding how well the lungs are functioning. In today’s blog, we will share with you more about what PFTs are and when they are used!
Different Types of Pulmonary Function Tests
Pulmonary function tests can measure things such as tidal volume (TV), functional residual capacity (FRC), total lung capacity (TLC), and more! There are many different types of pulmonary function tests, here are two common types of tests:
- Spirometry is a common type of pulmonary function test that uses a spirometer to measure how much air is entering the lungs each time you breathe. A spirometer is a device that contains a mouthpiece that you breathe into, the device itself is connected to a machine that can read your results. This safe and common type of PFT can help your physician determine how strong your lungs are.
- Plethysmography is a safe, comfortable, and noninvasive lung function test. Plethysmography utilizes an airtight, see-through box that the patient can stand or sit in. There are sensors in both the mouthpiece that you breathe into and the box itself to measure airflow and pressure in your mouth and chest.
When PFTs Are Used
Pulmonary Function Tests can be used for a number of different reasons including routine checkups, they are also extremely helpful in diagnosing respiratory health conditions. A few conditions that PFTs can help diagnose include respiratory infections, allergies, and chronic lung diseases. Generally, a PFT will be performed if the patient is experiencing symptoms such as chest pain, coughing, difficulty breathing, and shortness of breath.
Who Performs PFTs?
At Advanced Respiratory Care Network, we offer pulmonary function testing that can help you get the correct diagnosis! In most cases, a referral from your physician is required. If you are interested in learning more about our pulmonary function testing, please visit our website or contact us with any questions!
Pulmonary function tests are very helpful in the diagnosis of many respiratory conditions. After your test is completed, your provider will contact you with your results which can help you get started on the right treatment plan for you. PFTs can help you get on the right track toward better breathing and doing all of the things you love!