When you are having problems with your breathing, you should have testing procedures to determine if your lungs are in the best possible condition.
There are certain things that these tests check, including:
- Gas exchange
- Rates of flow
- Lung volume
You can request tests at WellCare Urgent Care center to determine if you have these problems with your lungs:
- Restrictive – airflow problems caused by poor chest muscles or lung tissue
- Obstructive – decreased airflow caused by resistance in the airways of the lungs
Lung Tests Are Noninvasive
Pulmonary function tests are painless and noninvasive procedures that require only a few hours of your time.
There are two main types of pulmonary function tests, including:
- Plethysmography – performed in an airtight box while you stand or sit
- Spirometry – a small electronic machine that has a device that fits over your mouth
Pulmonary function tests check for a variety of problems that include:
- Peak expiratory flow rate
- Forced expiratory flow
- Forced expiratory volume
- Forced vital capacity
- Total lung capacity
- Residual volume
- Functional residual capacity
- Vital capacity
- Minute volume
- Tidal volume
Our physicians will analyze and compare your test results against other individuals who are the same gender and similar age. When you have had these types of tests previously, we compare your results to find any lung problems. If we notice a problem with the results, then we can plan a course of treatments or we can refer you to a specialist.
What Can Pulmonary Function Tests Find?
You may request these types of tests as part of a routine physical examination, but pulmonary function tests can also reveal other health issues such as:
- Tumors of the lungs
- Inflammation in the lungs
- Chronic bronchitis
You shouldn’t have these tests when you have tuberculosis, serious heart conditions, pressure in the eyes, or bulging blood vessels.
The Testing Procedure
Before the test, stop eating for several hours, don’t smoke, and avoid taking most types of medications. You will need to provide a detailed history concerning your other health concerns. After arriving for the test, you must remove tight clothing and jewelry. You should wear your dentures so that you can hold the mouthpiece of the testing equipment correctly. Your nose is pinched with a device so that you can only breathe through your mouth. To avoid any complications, a technician will monitor you during the test.
Come into WellCare
If you have any trouble breathing and would like to know if there is an underlying cause then come into WellCare Urgent Care Center in Grand Rapids to get a pulmonary function test done. Book an appointment online at our Cascade and Leonard locations to get started.