Spirometry and bronchodilator test

Yun Su Sim, Ji Hyun Lee, Won Yeon Lee, Dong In Suh, Yeon Mok Oh, Jong Seo Yoon, Jin Hwa Lee, Jae Hwa Cho, Cheol Seok Kwon, Jung Hyun Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Spirometry is a physiological test for assessing the functional aspect of the lungs using an objective indicator to measure the maximum amount of air that a patient can inhale and exhale. Acceptable spirometry testing needs to be conducted three times by an acceptable and reproducible method for determining forced vital capacity (FVC). Until the results of three tests meet the criteria of reproducibility, the test should be repeated up to eight times. Interpretation of spirometry should be clear, concise, and informative. Additionally, spirometry should guarantee optimal quality prior to the interpreting spirometry results. Our guideline adopts a fixed normal predictive value instead of the lower limit of normal as the reference value because fixed value is more convenient and also accepts FVC instead of vital capacity (VC) because measurement of VC using a spirometer is impossible. The bronchodilator test is a method for measuring the changes in lung capacity after inhaling a short-acting b-agonist that dilates the airway. When an obstructive ventilatory defect is observed, this test helps to diagnose and evaluate asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease by measuring reversibility with the use of an inhaled bronchodilator. A positive response to a bronchodilator is generally defined as an increase of ≥12% and ≥200 mL as an absolute value compared with a baseline in either forced expiratory volume at 1 second or FVC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-112
Number of pages8
JournalTuberculosis and Respiratory Diseases
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Korean Academy of Tuberculosis and Respiratory Disease. The authors thank Kwang Ho In, M.D., Korea University and Jang Won Sohn, M.D., Hanyang University for their review.


  • Bronchodilator Agents
  • Guideline
  • Lung
  • Spirometry


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