Breathing Assessment Before and After Inhaler

This test measures the effect of a medication that you inhale (a bronchodilator) on how well you breathe.




This test measures the effect of a medication that you inhale (a bronchodilator) on how well you breathe.



Bronchodilation responsiveness measures the effect of a medication that you inhale (a bronchodilator) on how well you breathe.

  • A bronchodilator is a medication you inhale that opens up the airways.
  • The effect of the bronchodilator is measured by spirometry.

Spirometry is a test that determines how well your lungs work. It determines lung function by measuring:

  • How much air you can breathe in (inhale)
  • How much air you can breathe out (exhale)
  • How fast you can breathe the air out
  • Some of the key findings are:

    • Forced vital capacity (FVC) - FVC is the largest amount of air you can force out of your lungs after you take a deep breath.
    • Forced expiratory volume (FEV-1) – FEV-1 is the amount of air you can force out of your lungs in one second.
    • Peak expiratory flow rate (PEFR) – PEFR is the maximum speed you can push air out of the lungs (exhale).

    Bronchodilator responsiveness is done to determine how well a bronchodilator medication works.

    • The test is done before and after the administration of a medication to open up the airways.
    • If you have one, you can use your own inhaler. If not, the person doing the test may give you the medication.
    • The results will document the percentage of improvement in all of the findings.

    Spirometry with bronchodilation responsiveness can help determine whether treatment with a bronchodilator improves the symptoms of various lung conditions, such as:

    • Asthma
    • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
    • Chronic bronchitis
    • Emphysema

    Prior to this test carefully follow any instructions given to you by your healthcare provider. This may include:

    • Use of inhaled breathing medications before the test
    • Wearing loose clothing so you can take a deep breath
    • Avoiding large meals before the test

    To stop you from breathing through your nose, a clip will be placed on your nose during the test.

    What should I ask my healthcare provider before having a spirometry?

    • What is the reason for the test?
    • What are the pros and cons of the test?
    • Is there any special preparation for the test? (If so, get clear instructions on what you need to do.)
    • Are there complications to the test?
    • How will I feel after the test?

    After the test, you should know the results and what symptoms you should report to your healthcare provider. You should also understand all home care instructions and follow-up plans.

    Source UHC.com

    Also known as:

    Acute Bronchitis


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