Pulmonary Function Testing

PFTs are tests that measure the amount of air in your lungs and the speed of the air moving through the airways.  These tests allow your physician to assess the presence, cause, characteristics and location of respiratory illness. Your doctor can choose from a variety of tests.

How Do I Schedule Testing?
To schedule a PFT you must have a test ordered by a physician.  To make an appointment  call (509) 946-4611 ext 2655.

Who Performs The Testing
A Respiratory Therapist specially trained in pulmonary function testing will perform your test. A Pulmonologist will interpret the results and provide your physician with a report.

Indications For PFT Testing
Including but not limited to:

  • Assess risk for surgery
  • Screen individuals at risk for pulmonary disease
  • Evaluate presence of lung disease
  • Evaluate extent of lung damage
  • Assess therapeutic intervention
  • Disability impairment evaluation

When is a test contraindicated?
Including but not limited to:

  • Recent eye surgery
  • Recent chest or abdominal surgery
  • Recent heart attack or unstable cardiovascular status
  • Thoracic, abdominal or cerebral aneurysm
  • Active respiratory infection

How Do I Prepare?

  • Please arrive at the Healthplex 10 minutes before your appointment to register
  • No vigorous exercise within 30 minutes of testing
  • No large meals 2 hours before the testing
  • No smoking at least 1 hour of testing
  • No alcohol consumption within 4 hurs of testing
  • Hold Short Acting Beta Agonists (SABA) for 4 hours before testing unless directed otherwise by ordering physician. Including but not limited to :

      Albuterol (ProAir, Proventil, Ventolin)
      Albuterol and Ipratropium bromide (Combivent, Duoneb)
      Ipratropium bromide (Atrovent)
      Levalbuterol (Xopenex)
      Pirbuterol (Maxair)

  • Hold Long Acting Beta Angonists (LABA) for 12 hours before testing unless directed otherwise by ordering physician. Including but not limited to:

      Arfomoterol (Brovana)
      Formoterol (Foradil, Performist, Symbicort, Dulera)
      Slameterol (Advair, Serevent)

What do I do during testing?

  • Testing is done while sitting.
  • You will be asked to breathe in and out through a mouthpiece in different patterns.
  • You may be asked to inhale a medicine (albuterol)

Your ability to perform and follow the testing instructions will impact the quality of your test results.
After the test you will be able to return to your normal activity and diet.

How do I get my test results?
You may receive a copy of your test results by contacting the Health Information Department at 946-4611 ext 2017.