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Spirometry is a common office test used to assess how well your lungs work by measuring how much air you inhale, how much you exhale and how quickly you exhale. It is used to diagnose asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other conditions that affect breathing. Spirometry may also be used periodically to monitor your lung condition and check whether a treatment for a chronic lung condition is helping you breathe better.
Pulmonary function tests (PFTs) are noninvasive tests that show how well the lungs are working. The tests measure lung volume, capacity, rates of flow, and gas exchange. This information can help your healthcare provider diagnose and decide the treatment of certain lung disorders.
You may have a PFT if your healthcare provider needs help to diagnose you with a health problem such as:
PFTs may be used to check lung function before surgery or other procedures in patients who have lung or heart problems, who are smokers, or who have other health conditions. Another use of PFTs is to assess treatment for asthma, emphysema, and other chronic lung problems. Your healthcare provider may also have other reasons to advise PFTs.
An attended sleep study, also called a Home Sleep Study, is a sleep study tool that is used for the diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea. Most HST devices are portable – about the size of a telephone handset.
They usually measure the following biologic parameters:
A patient is usually ordered a HST by his or her doctor who suspects that the individual has obstructive sleep apnea. The patient usually applies the above mentioned sensors to the body before sleep time and sleeps with the equipment for 1 – 3 nights. The equipment is returned to the diagnostic service company where the data is downloaded and processed for interpretation by a sleep physician.
Once the data is interpreted by a sleep physician, a diagnostic interpretation report is sent back to the ordering physician who discusses the results of the home sleep testing.
The 6 minute walk test measures the distance someone can walk quickly on a flat, hard surface in 6 minutes. The test reflects the person’s ability to perform daily physical activities. Because COPD affects everyone differently, lung function and exercise tolerance testing help doctors and patients work together to develop the best treatment plan.
The 6-minute walk test was developed as a valid alternative to standard treadmill-based exercise testing for people who are elderly or who cannot perform treadmill-based exercise testing. You may have another 6-minute walk test after a certain amount of time has passed to test how much you have improved, as well.
In flexible laryngoscopy, a thin, flexible viewing tube (called a laryngoscope) is passed through the nose and guided to the vocal cords, or larynx. Fiberoptic cables permit a physician to directly inspect the nose, throat, and larynx for abnormalities.
The purpose of the laryngoscopy is: