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Help diagnose suspected lung disease. Help in planning treatments and to decide whether treatments should becontinued, changed or are no longer needed.

Duration 30 min - Bulk billed Service


Spirometry measures the volume and pace of air you can forcefully exhale from your lungs after a maximal breath in. This is measured with a device called a spirometer. In this test you will be asked to inhale as much air as possible and then blow the air out as fast as you can until no more air can be exhaled. This test is usually performed before and after a bronchodilator, or puffer, (normally Ventolin™ or Bricanyl™) to assess the effect of these medications on your lung function. Prior to the test you will be asked to stop taking your reliever puffers for 6 hours or your controller puffers for 12 hours prior to your test. If you think you cannot stop taking your puffers for this long please speak to our laboratory scientist beforehand.


This test measures how well you can move, or ‘transfer’ gases from the lungs to the bloodstream. In this test you will be asked to take a deep breath in of a harmless gas mix and hold your breath for around 10 seconds. While you are holding your breath some of the gas moves from your lungs to your blood. A computer works out how much gas has moved or transferred. If you are a current smoker, you should avoid smoking for 6 hours before the test as this can affect the result.



How to prepare for the lung function test:

  • Avoid puffers 24 hrs prior

  • Do not smoke 24hrs before the test

  • Do not drink alcohol within four hours of test

  • Do not eat a large meal within two hours of test

  • Please wear loose clothing

  • Do not perform vigorous exercise within 30 minutes of test


Although it may feel like it, your lungs are never completely empty even when you have blown out as far as you can in the spirometry test. So, to work out your total lung volume (or total lung capacity) we use a test that measures the air you can’t breathe out as well as the air you can. This test requires you to sit inside a see-through chamber. Sensitive equipment measures very small pressure changes occurring inside the chamber as you are breathing; these pressure changes are used to calculate your total lung volume or capacity.

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