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Useful Information Prior to Your Test

Please ensure that you allow enough time to travel, park and check in at the reception. 

If you take regular prescription medication, please bring a copy of the prescription with you.  Sometimes there are medical conditions that can mean it is advisable to delay performing a test – please check the ‘Contraindications to Respiratory Testing’ for further information.

Ideally on the day of the test you are advised to:

  • Avoid smoking if possible on the day of the test
  • Not drink alcohol for 4 hours prior to the test
  • Avoid vigorous exercise for 30 minutes before the test
  • Wear comfortable clothing that does not restrict chest expansion
  • Avoid eating a large meal for at least 2 hours before the test

Sometimes you may be asked to stop taking certain inhalers and/or tablets prior to you test.  Please check your letter and further information can be found in ‘Inhaler Medications and Withholding times’.

Below is a list of medical conditions or circumstances that may mean that your test should be postponed.  This is because the results from the investigations may not be accurate or reliable, or that is would be safer to delay the test by a few weeks. 

  • Coughing up blood that has not yet been investigated by a doctor
  • Recent collapsed lung
  • Unstable heart condition – for example recent angina or heart attack
  • A blood clot on your lung
  • Recent surgery to the eyes (including cataracts), chest or stomach
  • An aneurysm (swelling in a large blood vessel) in your brain, chest or stomach
  • Recent illness that might prevent you from performing the test (e.g. nausea)
  • Treatment with antibiotics and/or steroid tablets within 6 weeks of the test date

If any of the above applies to you, please contact the department so we can discuss the individual circumstances and advise accordingly. 

Sometimes your Consultant will ask you to stop taking certain medication prior to having a breathing test, this will be stated in the appointment letter and accompanying information.

Please Note:  If you are unable to withhold your inhalers for the required length of time because of your breathing symptoms do not worry – just take your inhalers as normal and advise which inhalers you have taken and at what time on the day of the test.

We are in the process of reviewing the drug withholding times prior to respiratory function testing.  Please refer to your appointment letter and accompanying patient information leaflet for the advice related to your particular test.  If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact the department for further advice.