Can't figure numbers out. Does crazy go with COPD? lol

Can't figure numbers out. Does crazy go with COPD? lol

Okay..so...lol.I'm the kind of person who will take numbers like PFT and try to figure out how a Dr. comes to his diagnosis/conclusion. I'm SO confused on this.

I am 5'5" I am 57 year old female. For the life of me I can't figure out my fev 1 and fev ratio, and how they say I have copd. I tried putting my numbers in on the online calculator at: patient.info/doctor/spirome...

My fev 1 is (most of the time 2.15 - 2.27...my(Fev was 2.87 and Fev1 2.17)on the day of test. IF I could figure it out I might could get my head around all this. My hubby and I have tried to figure how they came to this diagnosis, and we can't. We so want to do the numbers right, as to agree, or not agree with the Dr., because its NOT a good thing to have copd. My mom says to just listen to what he says and not worry with the numbers. Well, if they added up to copd I'd do just that. However from my/our calculations they don't. I do know my fev 1 is on the low side of normal.

Can any of you help me figure out how this guy says I have COPD? I think it's very important to know. I tried calling, and left like 5 messages, and heard nothing back yet. He never really explained how he got my diagnosis. Hmmmm..... I just want to be able to say I have COPD, or I don't.....it's disturbing to say the least. I'm sure some of you have unanswered questions also. I don't want anyone to throw stones at me for asking...so please...if you feel like reprimanding me, don't bother answering. Some people don't dissect things like I do. Haha!! Also, some people don't like questions with numbers such as this. I have noticed. But, loves, I'm not here to irritate or bother anyone. Promise.

Also, my Siberian Husky "Tucker" says hello to all of you!! :) He has one blue eye and one brown eye, and he loves everybody.

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  • phyllis, You are not in this boat alone. I was told by one pulmonologist I have emphysema (COPD), another told me no COPD my lungs are just stiff. My last pulmonologist said maybe intermittent asthma, and that my lungs were retaining CO2. Then after doing another PFT he said my lungs were normal, but to continue using my inhaler twice a day, with no explanation as to why.

    I could not make heads or tails of the numbers on the test either, so I took it to my PC, he showed me a diagram doctors use to diagnose lung problems. He said my test showed issues, so he looked at my ct scan and found "blebs" little bubbles in my lungs, not a lot, but enough. Then he told me that I do indeed have mild stage COPD, specifically emphysema.

    Apparently they go by the FEV1/FVC % under SPIROMETRY, mine was 73% and 72% after breathing treatment. My FEV1 shows 2.35 before treatment and 2.34 after. I don't remember which line they look at under DIFFUSING CAPACITY.

    The only thing I can think of off hand to describe the diagram he showed me is a kind of family tree, each box leads to another box.

    I am seeing a new pulmonologist in September.

    Unfortunately the only advice I can offer is to keep looking until you find a doctor you can trust, one who takes the time to answer your questions.

    Good luck, please let me know how you are doing. By the way, I am 5'3 and 60 years old (I was diagnosed at 57).

  • Wow, I guess you're confused. So for 3 yrs. you have wondered? I'd be nuts by now...lol. That is unfortunate that they never gave you a definitive diagnosis.

    I wonder if this spirometry calculator online is accurate? I can't figure your numbers out either. haha!! Wow, I know it can't be this hard. I need to talk to someone who can explain it to me. From what I see...your numbers are good. So are mine.

    I will be in touch with you. I have read your posts, and I do believe we have much in common with the confusion and such.

    I hope today is a good one for you!! <3

    God bless...

  • I've suspected for 3 years that I have emphysema. The shortness of breath, the fact that every CT scan report list lung tissue damage from emphysema (I have had at least one every 6 months, most for the lung cancer).

    I think the reason they will not classify me as having COPD is because currently, I have no marked obstruction of lung function.

    My primary is the one who explained it to me. He also showed my my latest CT scan and pointed out the little bubbles that shouldn't be there. This is going to sound weird, but I kinda felt a little happy when I left my PC's office, I felt I had been vindicated.

    If your PFT report is the same as mine the first category is Spirometry, then you've got FVC, FEV1, FEV/FVC, and 7 more lines under that. According to my PC it's that 3rd line the FEV1/FVC (% instead of liters) that they look at the pre-measure and post measure numbers. Then they look at one under Diffusing Capacity, but I cannot remember which one.

    Yes, please keep in touch.

  • Oh yes, I will keep in touch. I go soon to talk to my Primary Dr. I hope to get a few answers.

    Have a great night now.

    God bless...and take good care.

  • Hi,

    I think docs use other metrics for and don't rely solely on the PFT test for diagnosis. At least here in the States they do. Pretty much if you are a smoker or history of smoking and see a doc with many coughs, bronchitis, any hospitalizations, pneumonia, or just many office visits with chest colds you will get a COPD diagnosis, even with a near "normal" PFT. The benefit here in the States is that diagnosis then qualifies you for rehab, treatment, and even drugs to be paid by medical insurance.

  • Hi Schmicter,

    I live in Western New York, I have had 1 pulmonologist tell me that I don't have COPD, that looking at my PFT results my lungs are just "stiff". Another one said that my PFT results were normal and because of that he would not give me a diagnosis of COPD (like I want to have this awful disease). My FEV1/FVC is at 73%. I was told 4 years ago that a CT scan showed damaged lung tissue most likely caused by emphysema.

    They were both going solely on the PFT. It sounds like you have a doc who looks at the whole picture, my advice is to to hold on to him/her with both hands.

    My PC looked at my PFT results AND my latest CT scan, and said definitely mild emphysema.

  • I guess it doesn't really matter what the docs write on their forms. Pretty sure emphysema and or chronic bronchitis is under the umbrella term COPD

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