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How does spirometry help with the diagnosis of asthma?

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Spirometry is a type of lung function test that’s commonly used to diagnose asthma. It’s a simple breathing exercise that measures how much and how fast you can blow air out of your lungs. It quickly shows if you have any airway obstructions. Spirometry can be done before and after you inhale the asthma drug albuterol, which helps open blocked airways. If your airway obstruction improves after the medication, that indicates you may have asthma.

SOURCES: National Institutes of Health web site: "Asthma." American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology web site: "Patient Gallery: Other diseases related to asthma."  National Asthma Education and Prevention Program: "Considerations for Diagnosing and Managing Asthma in the Elderly" and "Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Asthma." American Lung Association web site: "Asthma in Adults Fact Sheet."



Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on February 28, 2018

SOURCES: National Institutes of Health web site: "Asthma." American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology web site: "Patient Gallery: Other diseases related to asthma."  National Asthma Education and Prevention Program: "Considerations for Diagnosing and Managing Asthma in the Elderly" and "Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Asthma." American Lung Association web site: "Asthma in Adults Fact Sheet."



Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on February 28, 2018

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How can methacholine challenge test (MCT) help diagnose asthma?

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