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HomeAnswersGeneral Practitionerpulmonary function testsAre PFT tests reliable?

How reliable are the PFT tests?

The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Medically reviewed by

iCliniq medical review team

Published At October 17, 2016
Reviewed AtJune 18, 2023

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

I have attached my PFT report and blood reports here for your reference. I would like to get a detailed analysis of my report. Kindly explain.

Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have gone through your attached reports in detail (attachment removed to protect patient identity). Serum uric acid is on a borderline level. It can increase due to alcohol, soda-based cold drinks, non-vegetarian food, especially meat and fish. You have to avoid these in your diet. Your CRP (C-reactive protein) is deranged. Though it is related to heart, it may also be deranged in many other causes. It is nothing much of a concern as lipid profile and cholesterol are all within normal range. Pulmonary function tests are grossly lower than normal. It means the lungs are not working to full capacity. I can say around 60% to 70 % is functioning. This may happen due to any lung diseases and needs further evaluation by tests like HRCT chest (high-resolution computed tomography). The rest of the findings are normal. Thank you and take care. Regards.

Patient's Query

Thank you doctor,

How reliable are the PFT tests? Because, the technician told me repeatedly that I am not doing it properly. Does it indicate any severe lung disease?

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

These are reliable to some extent. But, it shows that you had three attempts to do the act and all three levels are deranged. As it is not 100 percent reliable, I have asked you to go a step ahead and do a HRCT (high resolution computerized tomography of the lungs)chest. If HRCT chest is normal, then nothing to worry about. I hope this helps. Thank you.

Patient's Query

Thank you doctor,

I just like to add one point. I have constant chest for the last three months. Each and every time, I feel some mucus in the throat, which does not clear at one go and keep on accumulating. Also, I am obese. Does the result depend on that as well?

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

You are absolutely right. The cough that you are getting with mucus accumulation is the cause for these deranged reports. Only being obese will not have deranged PFTs (pulmonary function tests). PFTs are specifically meant for lung functions. If you are a smoker, then these test reports and the cough are expected. If you are a non-smoker, then you need a thorough analysis from a chest physician specialist. Thank you.

Patient's Query

Thank you doctor,

I am not a smoker and never had any background of asthma. Three months back, I had cold and cough. From that time only I had this issue and a feel of something at the base of the throat.

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com. It is good that you are a non-smoker. There will not be any problem in your recovery. Do consult a chest physician and get chest x-ray or HRCT (high resolution computerized to tomography of lungs) chest. If necessary, you can check the mucus for microorganisms. Till then, start yoga and breathing exercises. Thank you.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Patil Mahaveer Jingonda
Dr. Patil Mahaveer Jingonda

Orthopedician and Traumatology

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