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A 46-year-old female asked:

No cough or sputum but i have a wheeze and tight chest. pred. value spirometry is 83%. is this copd or late onset asthma?

3 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Michael Zacharisen
Allergy and Immunology 33 years experience
Other factors: Asthma is reversible airway obstruction that can start in adults. After taking several puffs of albuterol inhaler, there should be at least 12% improvement in fev1. While 83% falls within normal range, it is not likely normal for you if wheezing and tightness are present. COPD is from smoking and can show obstruction on lung function, but is less likely to be reversible like asthma.
Dr. Larry Maturani
Hospital-based practice 24 years experience
Need more info: You gave predicted value but what was your actual value. By definition, asthma is reversable airway disease, i.e. Once you treat it, your lungs return to baseline normal. In contrast, copd, your airways will not return to normal but rather reach a lower than normal baseline depending on how severe you are. Thre are four leverl of disease and you get catagorized based on a lung function test.
Dr. Amrita Dosanjh
Pediatric Pulmonology 36 years experience
More information pls: COPD patients typically will produce more sputum or mucus when they cough. Your symptoms may be either but without a history of smoking, asthma is more likely. Since you have had a PFT , asking for the FEV1/FVC ratio will help your physician determine whether there is a component of restriction as well.

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Last updated Apr 9, 2020

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