Pulmonary Function Test

Pulmonary function tests (PFTs) are a group of noninvasive tests that measure how well the lungs are functioning. This information can help physician to diagnose and decide the treatment of certain disorders such as COPD, asthma, ILD and other lung disorders. They are also important in the evaluation of patients prior to major surgery. These tests measures lung capacity, volume, rates of flow, and gas exchange.
Your doctor may order these tests:
• If patient is having symptoms associated with lung diseases.
• For routine physical examination
• To monitor how effective your treatment is if you have a lung disease, such as asthma
• To assess how well your lungs are working before you have surgery .This test can be performed on the OPD basis.
The respiratory technician explains the entire procedure to the patient. For this test, patient sits in front of a machine and be fitted with a mouthpiece. It is important that the mouthpiece fits snugly so that all the air you breathe goes into the machine. You’ll also wear a nose clip to keep you from breathing air out through your nose. Patient will be instructed to inhale and exhale in different ways. He/she will be watched carefully during the procedure for dizziness, trouble breathing, or other problems. A bronchodilator may be given after certain tests. The tests will then be repeated several minutes later, after the bronchodilator has taken effect.
It’s important that you don’t eat heavy meal before testing. A full stomach can prevent your lungs from inhaling fully.
PFTs are usually safe for most people. The risks of this procedure may include:
• Dizziness during the tests
• Feeling short of breath
• Coughing
• Asthma attack brought on by deep inhalation