Lung Function Tests
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Tests & Treatments

Lung Function Tests

Lung function tests measure lung capacity and functionality, crucial for respiratory health.


Suitable For

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
Preoperative Evaluation
Occupational Lung Diseases
Monitoring Response to Treatment
Assessing Lung Capacity
Screening for Smoking-Related Lung Damage
Shortness of Breath
Chronic Cough
Asthma Management
Unexplained Exercise Limitation

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Not Suitable For

Recent Chest or Abdominal Surgery
Myocardial Infarction within Previous Month
Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm
Nausea or Vomiting
Hemoptysis of Unknown Origin
Severe Uncontrolled Hypertension
Respiratory Infection
Recent Pulmonary Embolism
Severe Psychological Disorders Impacting Cooperation
Severe Pain that Interferes with Test Performance
Active Haemoptysis
"Recent Facial
or Skull Surgery or Trauma"
Recent Eye Surgery
Active Tuberculosis
Unstable Angina

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Pulmonary function tests, also known as lung function tests, are a series of non-invasive procedures designed to evaluate the performance of the lungs. These tests measure various aspects of lung function, including volume, capacity, flow rates, and gas exchange. They play a pivotal role in diagnosing and determining the treatment plan for lung disorders such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and sleep apnea, among others. For a comprehensive evaluation of your lung health, consider scheduling a private lung function test with a qualified provider through Odycy, a trusted platform for fast access to healthcare services.

Key Takeaways

  • Lung function tests, such as spirometry and lung volume testing, are essential for assessing lung capacity and airflow.
  • These tests are crucial for diagnosing respiratory conditions like asthma, COPD, and sleep apnea.
  • Polysomnography is a common test for diagnosing sleep apnea.
  • The purpose of lung function tests extends to monitoring disease progression, evaluating treatment efficacy, pre-surgical assessment, and routine health checks.
  • The procedure involves non-painful, repeated breathing efforts under a technician's guidance, with no downtime post-test.
  • Test results are compared against normal values adjusted for age, height, and gender; deviations may indicate lung issues.
  • Most insurance plans cover lung function tests, but coverage details can vary; self-pay options are available.

Need to Know

What are the prevalent lung function tests?

The most frequently administered lung function tests include spirometry, which quantifies the volume of air the lungs can accommodate and the force exerted during exhalation, and lung volume testing, which measures the total air volume in the lungs, inclusive of residual air post-normal exhalation. Sleep apnea tests, such as polysomnography, are also commonly performed.

Why are lung function tests conducted?

Lung function tests are primarily performed to diagnose and monitor conditions that impact respiratory function, including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and sleep apnea. They are also utilized to evaluate the effectiveness of treatments for these conditions, assess lung function prior to surgical procedures, or as part of routine physical examinations.

What can I anticipate during a lung function test?

During a lung function test, a pulmonary function technician will instruct you to exert maximum effort while inhaling and exhaling. These tests are non-painful and are typically repeated multiple times to ensure accuracy. Following the test, you can resume your regular daily activities.

How should I interpret the results of a lung function test?

Normal values for lung function tests are determined based on factors such as age, height, and gender. An abnormal value may indicate a potential lung issue. However, it's important to note that even individuals with healthy lungs may occasionally exhibit abnormal breathing test values. Your healthcare provider will interpret and explain your test results.

Are lung function tests covered by insurance?

Lung function tests are generally covered by most insurance plans, as they are deemed essential for diagnosing and treating lung diseases. However, coverage may vary depending on the specifics of your insurance plan and the reason for the test. It is advisable to consult with your insurance provider for detailed information. Self-pay options are also available for those without insurance or for those who prefer not to utilize their insurance.

Dr. Nicholas Bush MBBS BSc (Hons)
Dr. Nicholas Bush MBBS BSc (Hons)
Last Reviewed:


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