A member asked:

Does a person need to have a pulmonary function test to rule out asthma? dr. didn't think asthma. ekg, cbc, blood clotting test, chest x-ray all normal. covid negative. still feeling a little shortness of breath. always been athlete. no problems?

7 doctors weighed in across 3 answers
Dr. Sue Ferranti answered

Specializes in Internal Medicine

Asthma can be diagnosed clinically if there is recurrent wheezing or recurrent coughing associated with the symptoms (like shortness of breath). If a pulmonary function test shows obstruction, a bronchodilator is given-if the obstruction is relieved, asthma is present. If there is no obstruction on the PFT, methacholine can be given-if obstruction then develops, asthma is likely present. Good luck

Answered May 28, 2021

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Dr. Robert Kwok answered

Specializes in Pediatrics

No, not in typical teen patients. However, pulmonary function testing machines are common and available in most cities. Athlete's are not typical teens in that athletes need maximal performance from their breathing, daily in training and especially on "race day". A person with mysterious breathing symptoms, especially an athlete, can go to an Asthma/Allergy/Lung doctor to get a pulmonary test.

Answered Apr 20, 2021

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Dr. Jeffrey Stein answered

Specializes in Vascular Surgery

Shortness of breath can be caused by many conditions including asthma. A PFT does not "rule out" asthma but may confirm a diagnosis, assess severity, and evaluate response to treatment. Asthma is reactive airway disease and in between episodes pulmonary function may be normal, especially in someone who is young and otherwise healthy.

Answered May 28, 2021

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