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Pulmonary Diagnostics

Pulmonary diagnostics offers a wide variety of services aimed at evaluating your lung function and helping in both understanding and diagnosing your symptoms. With this information, your physician may be able to develop a treatment plan that is both suitable for your particular condition as well as improve your breathing and well-being. In addition, the results of these tests may help in determining the need for further testing and treatment.

Your doctor may order one or more pulmonary function tests. These tests measure:

  • Inspiratory (breathing in) and expiratory (breathing out) air flow velocities (spirometry)
  • Your total lung capacity (lung volumes)
  • How well your lungs transport oxygen into your blood (diffusion capacity)

A complete pulmonary function study takes approximately 45 to 90 minutes to complete. You will be asked to breathe into a tube called a "spirometer" that records the amount of air and air rate breathed over a specified period of time. You may be tested before and after taking certain medications, as well as be asked to repeat the tests from time to time as part of your treatment plan.

Your doctor may also order other tests to help diagnose your lung disorders. These may include:

  • Pulse oximetry, which measures the level of oxygen in your blood at rest or at exercise
  • Arterial blood gas, which measures the actual amount of oxygen and carbon dioxide in your circulation
  • Methacholine challenge test, to determine whether you may have asthma.

Pulmonary diagnostics also performs tests that assist in diagnosing certain sleep disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea, which may present as snoring, disruptive sleep patterns, and excessive daytime sleepiness. If you feel you have any of these symptoms, you should discuss them with your doctor.

We also provide patient education on both the proper use of metered dose inhalers with or without a spacing device as well as home peak flow monitoring, both essential tools in asthma therapy and management. This service is offered to inpatients and outpatients.

Most outpatient testing requires advanced scheduling. For more information or to schedule please call 978.937.6023.

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Circle Health is a progressive collaboration of physicians, hospitals, other health providers and organizations with a shared vision for empowering people and communities to be healthier.

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