Preparation for Pulmonary Function Tests.
Welcome and thank you for choosing Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center for your pulmonary function tests. Our physicians and respiratory therapists are dedicated to providing highly skilled and compassionate care for you and your family. We understand that you may be apprehensive about your procedure. We hope the following information will be helpful to you as you prepare for your procedure and during your recovery.
The Pulmonary Lab is located at Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center - Main Campus, 3rd floor of the E building.
We want to make your experience as comfortable as possible. If you have any questions or concerns that are not answered here, please do not hesitate to call your physician or the Pulmonary Lab at (814) 534-9665 between 7:00 AM and 3:30 PM.
Before Your Procedure
Your physician’s office will schedule the date and time of your procedure with Central Scheduling. You or your physician’s office will be provided any necessary instructions when the exam is scheduled.
If you develop a cold, please call your physician. It may be necessary to reschedule your test for a time when you are feeling better.
Certain medications will need to be held prior to your test.
- 7 days prior to the test hold Spiriva
- 3 days prior hold all allergy medication with antihistamines such as Zyrtec, Allegra and Claritin
- 24 – 48 hours prior to the test hold Singulair
- 24 hours prior to test hold all inhalers and respiratory medications
- 12 hours prior to the test do not consume caffeine so avoid chocolate, tea, cola drinks or coffee
- 8 hours prior to the test hold all fast acting inhalers such as Albuterol, Proair, Proventil, Ventolin, Maxair, and Xopenex
Do Not smoke for at least 12 hours prior to test.
On the Morning of Your Procedure
Wear loose fitting, clean, comfortable clothing and flat shoes. Do not bring any valuables with you.
You may be accompanied by one adult family member or friend. Children should not accompany adults having a procedure.
If you were not contacted by pre-certification please bring your identification and insurance cards. If you have questions about your insurance coverage or pre-certification, call your insurance company. If you are not covered by insurance, please make arrangements for payment by calling the business office at (814) 410-8470.
Day of the Procedure
Parking is available in the garage or with the valet at the Main entrance. When you arrive at the hospital please report directly to the Pulmonary Lab on the3rd floor of the E building. If you have any other testing scheduled prior to pulmonary testing, report to the Outpatient Registration desk in the Main Lobby. You should arrive at least 1 hour prior to the scheduled pulmonary function test so there is enough time to get the tests completed and make it to your appointment on time.
You will sign in at registration desk and have a seat in the waiting room. If you are a new patient you will need to fill out an information form.
Healthcare professionals will be available in this area to make you comfortable and to answer your questions. Your safety is our number one priority.
The staff may ask you the same questions several times; they will ask your name, birth date, what procedure you are having done, your medications and your allergies. By repeating our questions, we are verifying and re-verifying very important information to ensure that your time with us is as safe as possible. Please be prepared to tell the respiratory therapist when you last took each of your medications.
During the Procedure
You will be taken back to the procedure room and will sit upright in a chair. The respiratory therapist will stay by your side and will explain everything that is happening.
The test consists of up to 5 parts and will take approximately 45 – 60 minutes. If you get tired, you can take a break between test sections.
You will be asked to close your lips tightly around a mouthpiece and wear nose clips so you breathe only through your mouth. A mouthpiece and hose are connected to a medical instrument that will record the patient’s different types of breathing (different techniques may be used to obtain and measure those efforts).
You will be asked to take deep breaths and exhale deeply.
You will be asked to breathe deep and fast for up to 15 seconds.
You will be asked to repeat these three times to ensure a more accurate reading.
You will be asked to hold your breath for up to 10 seconds.
You may be asked to breath in medication to make it easier to exhale.
You may be asked to breathe in a mixture of oxygen or helium and oxygen.
Please report any symptoms you experience during the testing immediately. These would include shortness of breath, dizziness, chest pain, sore mouth or feeling your heart racing.
After Your Procedure
Your time in the Pulmonary Lab will vary depending on the procedure you had done. You will be discharged immediately after the test.
You can generally resume all of your medication immediately unless otherwise instructed.
The therapist is not permitted to discuss your results. The Pulmonologist chosen to interpret the test will be notified that it is here for him to review. Once he interprets the test, the results are faxed to the ordering physician. Your doctor will generally discuss the results with you at your next physician’s office visit. Talk with your doctor or testing center about how to get your test results
Thank-you for allowing us to take care of you during your pulmonary function test.