Spirometry results... can anyone read... - Asthma Community ...

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Spirometry results... can anyone read results?

Ami40 profile image
10 Replies

Hi All, thanks for your help so far...

Is there anybody on here who can read after analysing spirometry results and work out what they mean if I share them etc?

I can't get in at the Dr's for some time etc.

I'm just unsure that I've even got asthma and believe my breathlessness may be due to allergies as was suggested by somebody before or due to some other issue...

Please let me know and grateful for any assistance etc 👍🏽🙏🏽

10 Replies
Troilus profile image

Hi Ami. You need to take a look at your fev1 reading before and after you took the blue inhaler. If it is asthma, it is likely that your reading after you took the inhaler will be higher.

Ami40 profile image
Ami40 in reply to Troilus

Hi they said I didn't need to take the blue inhaler, said there was no need? Frustrating as I said I needed the reversibility part and then finally got it added, but then she said there's no need... posted my results up, pleased take a look if you can?

Troilus profile image
Troilus in reply to Ami40

Without reversibility testing your results won’t help in an asthma diagnosis. They might show obstruction which is part of the test. If the blue inhaler reduces the obstruction this indicates Asthma, but as they didn’t ask you to do this your results won’t say if it is asthma or not.However, if your results did not show obstruction, then there is no point in using the blue inhaler as there is no obstruction to reverse. Am I making sense?😁

Now, some people who have asthma do have normal spirometry when their asthma is being good, in which case it may be wait and see.

I’ve added a link that may help.


Lysistrata profile image
LysistrataAdministrator in reply to Troilus

I would add to this that you can still have reversibility after reliever inhaler without showing initial obstruction. This can be to the level consistent with an asthma diagnosis or beyond (12-15% improvement from baseline depending on guidelines). Without going into details, there are also other spirometry patterns you can get with asthma, and not everyone is at the predicted level, so being told 'no obstruction' doesn't necessarily mean blue inhaler won't help and/or increase your spirometry reading.

It's also possible that there is obstruction that isn't recognised, since often a fixed cutoff for obstruction is used (70%) instead of basing it on the predicted values for that person (it's related to predicted FEV1, and so will also vary by age, sex, and height, but they often just use 70% instead of calculating what it should be).

I get very frustrated that the guidelines insist that reversibility shouldn't be done without obstruction, as if it were impossible to improve - especially if they're going to insist on using a fixed ratio. I'm not sure why they don't just do the reversibility anyway, since the expectation is that you may need to do it if you do have obstruction initially, so the time etc should have already been factored in.

Apologies that this doesn't really help you, Ami40, but thought it might be informative for you and anyone else reading. Perhaps you could chat to the AUK nurses on WhatsApp (M-F 9-5, 07378 606728) and get their views?

As Troilus has said, it is of course also possible to just have a good day and that's why your results are normal! Spirometry does give a fuller picture than peak flow at home, but on the other hand you can do peak flow a lot more often and get a sense of how it behaves/any patterns.

Ami40 profile image
Ami40 in reply to Lysistrata

Hi All, thanks for your input, I really don't understand a lot of this,specifically why I was asked not to do the reversibility but yet there could be asthma present, but here's my results... please let me know what you think if possible, very much appreciated... 🙂

Lysistrata profile image
LysistrataAdministrator in reply to Ami40

Well basically, I would guess they didn't do reversibility because on this topic everything is very standardised. They're basing the predicted values on measuring the lung function of a lot of people and taking the average values for someone of your age/sex/height (and possibly your ethnicity as well, I see in the comments).

But not everyone is going to just sit dead on the average value -some people will be naturally higher and some will be lower. Spirometry measurements however still seem to be done assuming every 40-year-old man 173cm tall has the same lung function. So you might still have asthma present, but it might not necessarily be picked up by this. You might also be fine on the day of the test, so this doesn't mean you don't have asthma at all; asthma is variable so you can be fine one day and not the next.

If I'm reading this right (and I'm not in any way an expert), you would be obstructed at 80% or below (so when the FEV1 value is 80% of the FVC value or less), and you were 76%, but presumably they decided this was 'close enough' to normal. As I mentioned, I think they should just do reversibility anyway, but I assume they see this as 'basically normal' and think they don't need to.

They'll be assuming that you won't be able to get any higher with the FEV1 and FVC and peak flow after the blue inhaler because you were 'normal'/within range to start with, but as I said in the previous post, that's not always the case (speaking from personal experience and others' personal experience).

Ami40 profile image
Ami40 in reply to Lysistrata

Thank you I think I do understand what you're saying and I had the reversibility part of the test added specifically, however she told me it's not needed. This is very frustrating as I've been advised that this would have tested for asthma if it was done!

You're saying that I may have Asthma and it may just not have been picked up by this test... I was advised from the results/letter from consultant that I do not have smoking related COPD, please tell that this is definitely confirmed and may just not have been picked up etc like with the Asthma you mention?

twinkly29 profile image
twinkly29 in reply to Ami40

Hi,Have they definitely said it's not asthma?

Just wondering if the "it's not needed" for reversibility is because it did show obstruction so they do think it's asthma? I might be clutching at straws of course.

I don't understand why they often don't bother with reversibility. It's no different to what you've just done, it's not difficult, just do it!!

Ami40 profile image
Ami40 in reply to twinkly29

Hi All, I've recently had another spirometry done with reversibility? I've tried to post results but can only attach one pic at a time? Is there any chance you can take a look please and let me know your thoughts, I'd be very grateful... the woman doing the test thought after all that, she didn't see much of a difference between having the inhaler and not but... I've got to wait for an appointment to have a chat etc...

At dusk
Ami40 profile image
Ami40 in reply to twinkly29

Hi Twinkly, I've had some more tests now with reversibility included, any chance you can give me your opinions at all again please 🙏🏽

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