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Pulmonary Function Lab
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Lungs (Pulmonary Medicine)

Pulmonary Function Lab

The Pulmonary Function Lab at Montefiore Medical Center provides advanced testing for many common pulmonary diseases and conditions. As part of the Division of Pulmonary Medicine, our team of experienced physicians, technicians and researchers conducts a series of breathing tests to determine the cause of abnormal lung function and chest symptoms such as chest pain, shortness of breath and chronic cough.

Advanced Pulmonary Testing

Through continual research studies in pulmonary function technology and methodology, we are constantly advancing diagnoses of pulmonary diseases and conditions.

Basic pulmonary function evaluations include screening for:

  • Asthma
  • Other causes of respiratory symptoms
  • Upper airway obstruction

Some patients require more advanced testing to determine the cause of pulmonary conditions, such as lung cancer. Our experienced pulmonary physicians and technicians use the most advanced functional technology to provide patients with a diagnosis and determine the best treatment options.

Advancing Research in Pulmonary Function

Through continual research studies in pulmonary function technology and methodology, we provide diagnoses of pulmonary diseases and conditions. The Division of Pulmonary Medicine, along with other researchers studied the pulmonary function of 92 percent of the nearly 14,000 FDNY firefighters and emergency medical service workers who provided rescue and recovery support at the World Trade Center site. David Prezant, MD, Thomas Aldrich, MD, and their team of physicians and researchers and other pulmonary experts identified the most critical cases and provided treatment. Many of the rescue workers who participated in the clinical trial received the treatment necessary to improve their quality of life and prevent further decline in lung function.

Conditions Diagnosed by Pulmonary Function Tests

Patients take a pulmonary function test (PFT) to assess the cause of abnormal lung function. Our team of experienced pulmonary experts most often examine patients with limited lung function due to lung disease.

Common reasons patients need a pulmonary function test include:

  • Diagnosis of diseases such as asthma, emphysema, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), fibrosis, interstitial lung disease, sarcoidosis, and pulmonary, vascular and other diseases
  • Assessment of the progress of disease or treatment
  • Disability exam
  • Preoperative evaluation
  • Research in respiratory physiology or epidemiology

Preparing for the Test

Pulmonary function tests are simply a series of breathing tests to determine lung size, flow rate of air in and out, and level of air pressure while breathing.

Patients should allot at least 90 minutes for the pulmonary function test. It is important for patients to avoid use of inhalers for four to six hours prior to their appointments, unless told otherwise by a physician. Also, patients should avoid eating a large meal or smoking at least one hour prior to the test.

To make an appointment, please call 1-866-MED-TALK (1-866-633-8255).

Recent publications and presentations relevant to pulmonary function testing.