Pulmonary care

Pulmonary Diagnostic Lab

The Pulmonary Diagnostic Lab assists in the diagnosis and care of patients with breathing problems. Through the use of sophisticated monitoring equipment, the tests will help your doctor determine if you have a breathing disorder, if your current medications are appropriate for you and make appropriate changes in your current medical treatment.

Tests are performed by respiratory care practitioners with credentials in pulmonary function testing. Test results are interpreted by a doctor specializing in pulmonary medicine.

Pulmonary tests conducted at the lab include:

  • pulmonary function studies
  • arterial blood gases
  • cardiopulmonary stress test (either treadmill or ergometric)
  • exercise challenge test (pediatric)
    Methacholine challenge - The methacholine challenge aids in the diagnosis of asthma or reactive airways. You will be asked to breathe into a machine after inhaling varying doses of a medication. Your responses to the medication will be evaluated. This procedure may take as long as two hours.
  • oximetry (resting, exercise, titrating 02 with exercise )
  • spirometry screening (occupational or health fairs)

Your doctor will give you instructions before you come to the hospital for a pulmonary test. Be sure to follow these instructions to help ensure the accuracy of the test.

St. Paul Pulmonary Hypertension Clinic

The St. Paul Pulmonary Hypertension Clinic is a clinical collaboration of United Hospital, St. Paul Heart Clinic and United Lung & Sleep Clinic, is exclusively dedicated to the diagnosis, treatment, and long-term follow up of patients with pulmonary hypertension.

Pulmonary hypertension occurs when there is an abnormal increase in blood pressure in the pulmonary arteries. High pressure in the pulmonary arteries can lead to right heart failure and can even be fatal. However, prognosis may be improved by early detection and emphasis on specific treatment of the underlying cause of the elevated pulmonary artery pressure.

The clinic currently treats and follows the second largest population of patients in the Twin Cities that have pulmonary hypertension.