Pulmonary Function Tests involes the assessment of lung function where general screening is required or specific disease of the lungs are suspected.
A very simple test of lung function is Peak Expiratory Flow Rate (PEFR). This can be done quickly and simply by your GP or nurse. The process involves forcefully blowing through a tube and taking a reading from a gauge and comparing this reading to a "predicted" reading depending on you gender, age and height.
A more detailed assessment can be done using a spirometer which maesures how well you can breathe out. This device is linked to a computer and either produces results in number form or in graph form (spirogram).
These tests can be very useful as an aid to diagnosing asthma, chronic obstructive airways disease (COPD) and many other respiratory conditions.
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