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Pulmonary Function Test: Spirometry

What is a Spirometry Pulmonary Function Test?

The Division of Pulmonary Medicine at Cincinnati Children's performs lung function tests such as spirometry.

Spirometry is a test that measures how much and how fast air flows into and out of the lungs.

Description of the Test

Your child will sit or stand in an upright position for this breathing test.

Spirometry is measured by having your child place padded nose clips on their nose and place their mouth tightly around a clean, filtered mouthpiece. After breathing normally the therapist will ask your child to breathe in deeply and then blast out the air, as hard and fast and long as possible.

The therapist will have your child repeat the test until we have at least three consistent tests.

Depending on the results your child may repeat the test 15 minutes after an inhaled medication is administered.

Length of Test

The actual test takes only a few minutes. However, with explanation and practice testing may take up to 40 minutes.

Preparing Your Child for the Test

Please contact your physician or provider for instruction on holding medications.

Last Updated 06/2022

Reviewed By Jaime Reiter, RT