Asthma Testing

spirometer
When testing for asthma, patients breathe into a spirometer. Photo © Advanced Medical Engineering

To help us determine whether or not you have asthma, or how severe your asthma may be, we may perform lung function tests. There are two types of tests commonly used for this- Spirometry and Peak Airflow.

Since both of these tests require forceful exhaling, they are not practical to use for testing young children. At Bluegrass Allergy Care we are specially trained in the challenges and procedures of diagnosing asthma in children.

Exhaled Nitric Oxide Measurement

This test helps determine how well your asthma is controlled, and is useful for helping to make improvements in your asthma treatment. Bluegrass Allergy Care is one of only a few offices in Central Kentucky that can offer this test.

For this test, you breathe into a machine which measures the amount of nitric oxide your lungs are producing. High levels of nitric oxide may indicate that there is a lot of inflammation in your lungs, and your asthma may not be well controlled.

Spirometry

In a Spirometry test, you breathe into a machine called a spirometer. The spirometer measures how much air you breathe out, and how fast the air moves. During the test you will take a deep breath and then exhale forcefully. You may be given a medication which opens your airways then perform the test again.

Peak Airflow

This test uses a small device that measures how strongly you can force air out of your lungs. You simply take a deep breath and exhale forcefully into the device. You may be given the device to take home in order to test yourself at different times throughout the day.