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Old 05-11-2010, 10:16 AM   #1
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diffusion capacity 67%

What does this mean?? I have emypsema and the letter results said diffusion capacity is moderately to serverly reudced to 67%.
Thanks
l

 
Old 05-12-2010, 01:47 PM   #2
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

Simply put, diffusion capacity is a measurement of the lung's ability to transfer gases. Those of us with diminished diffusion/DLCO experience air trapping, and although taking a breath in is easy, getting the trapped air out is not. Pursed lip breathing (PLB) helps--simply breathe in for four counts and blow out like you are cooling soup to the count of 8. This is especially helpful if you find yourself short of breath or anxious.

My DLCO is 22%, so 67% sounds pretty good to me

 
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Old 05-13-2010, 12:50 PM   #3
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

Thank you so much!!! I haven't gotten much info on emphysema or asthma. What do you have??

 
Old 05-13-2010, 03:44 PM   #4
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

I was diagnosed with emphysema 7 years ago and immediately placed on oxygen. My doctor at the time didn't tell me much, so I went online and spent hours researching the condition and joining several COPD forums which have been immensely helpful. The best things you can do for yourself are quitting smoking and exercising.

It sounds like you have had pulmonary function tests, Prissybelle. If you have COPD, the most important number is the FEV-1, which is an indicator of your total lung function. Asthma used to be considered COPD, but not so much anymore. Chronic bronchitis is the other form of COPD and involves much mucus production/coughing, whereas emphysema doesn't.

 
Old 05-14-2010, 05:26 PM   #5
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

I hope you are feeling well. I'm sorry you are so sick.My spirometry FVC is normal, FEV1 is moderately reduced to 67% .Diffusion capacity is moderately to severely reduced at 47% (what does that mean?) On my list of diagnoses at my insurance co (kaiser) is shows Emphysema- primary, Bronchospasm, Asthma. I don't know where the others came from!!

My doctor doesn't seem concerned enough for me & my husband. He (my husband) wants me to go to a lung dr. I have called and asked for a referral, but haven't heard anything yet. I called the American Lung Assoc. and they are sending me info. Do you go to a lung dr? Or breathing class or meetings? Thank you for helping me.

Last edited by moderator2; 05-14-2010 at 07:46 PM. Reason: please do not post your email address

 
Old 05-14-2010, 06:07 PM   #6
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

Yes!!! that's it!!! I can't blow out as much as I take in. My flow meter says 250 where for my height and age (62) is should be 443. Is that right??

 
Old 05-15-2010, 09:26 AM   #7
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

Actually I'm not sick at all--as long as I have plenty of supplemental 02. My FEV-1 is 40% so, like you, it's the diffusion/DLCO that causes the problem. You really need to see a pulmonary dr. If you haven't had a 6 min. walk test with the pulse oximeter on your finger, you really need one to determine if your 02 level falls below 88%...that is the indicator as to whether or not you need supplemental 02.

If your diffusion is 67%, your 02 level is probably fine. If it's 47%, that's a greater concern.

I blow 200 on the peak flow meter, so your 250 isn't much greater. (And yes 400 is probably average for healthy people.) Hopefully your problem is asthma, which can be controlled with inhalers.

 
Old 05-16-2010, 11:24 AM   #8
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

Interesting. After suffering from pleurisy for several months, I had two PFT's one prior to cardiac tamponade which the overall score was below 80, and one after which on the intake side was way above average and the diffusion was at 50%. the report said "caution should be taken as the overall shows signs of airtrapping". I have just been diagnosed with Lupus and both my rheumatologist are telling me I need more heart test (stress echo cardiogram) to rule out pulmonary hypertension. However, the cardiologist does not agree and will only give me an echocardiogram to rule out a pericardial effusion that keeps returning. In the meantime, it's been five months ane I have severe left chest pain, and difficulting walking for more than five to ten minutes, at a regular pace, without having breathing difficulties. My pulse ox, goes down, from 97 to 89 after a six minute walk. I am using oxygen at night, just so I can sleep without screaming in paid, if I accidentally take a deep breath. Have you experienced this?

Last edited by honey24; 05-16-2010 at 11:26 AM.

 
Old 05-16-2010, 01:16 PM   #9
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

No I haven't had this problem. I'm sorry you are I will pray for you to get better.

 
Old 05-16-2010, 01:24 PM   #10
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

Hi Hypatia, thank you again for the good info. My diffusion is 47% and flow meter 250I haven't heard form my dr about the referral to the lung dr. I got info from the American lung assoc yesterday. Do you go to the better breathers club? I have had to use the nebulizer twice since last Sunday. I just wish I had the advair back. Have you heard of Qubar inhaler? I think that's how you spell it. A friend uses it and it helps her. I glad to hear you can get relief with your meds.

 
Old 05-16-2010, 03:24 PM   #11
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

No, I don't go to the Better Breathers club, Prissybelle, but as long as I walk at least 30 min. a day, I do very well for someone 70 with severe E. The only inhaler I use is Foradil. Maybe your friend uses Qvar, which is a corticosteroid inhaler. I use it when I have a lot of congestion.

Why have you been denied Advair? It contains both a bronchodilator and a corticosteroid, which explains why you find relief with it. If necessary, you can use your nebulizer more than once daily.

I sure hope you get that referral to the pulmonologist soon, or at least some professional answers to your questions. Also, ask if your dr. has a sample of the Spiriva inhaler you can try. It's a miracle drug for many with E.

honey24 - I've heard pleurisy is horribly painful and takes a long time to recover from. I too hope you find relief soon. Wish we could be more help to you...you may want to post a new topic.

 
Old 05-17-2010, 08:43 AM   #12
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Re: diffusion capacity 67%

Quote:
Originally Posted by hypatia View Post
No, I don't go to the Better Breathers club, Prissybelle, but as long as I walk at least 30 min. a day, I do very well for someone 70 with severe E. The only inhaler I use is Foradil. Maybe your friend uses Qvar, which is a corticosteroid inhaler. I use it when I have a lot of congestion.

Why have you been denied Advair? It contains both a bronchodilator and a corticosteroid, which explains why you find relief with it. If necessary, you can use your nebulizer more than once daily.

I sure hope you get that referral to the pulmonologist soon, or at least some professional answers to your questions. Also, ask if your dr. has a sample of the Spiriva inhaler you can try. It's a miracle drug for many with E.

honey24 - I've heard pleurisy is horribly painful and takes a long time to recover from. I too hope you find relief soon. Wish we could be more help to you...you may want to post a new topic.
Thanks Hypatia. The ins co (says advair is a non-formulary drug, not covered by them) in other words too expensive. I will ask about the Spiriva inhaler. I'm calling again today about the lung dr referral. I am done with Kaiser ins. Our open season is Nov. & I am going to change. It will probably cost me more money though. I am on disability since 2003,( had a kidney removed, arthritis, bulging discs in back, pinched nerves, sciatica, knee replacement & several knee surgeries, still having them and foot surgeries) when I was 55. I didn't take medicare when I was eligible at 57, so now that I am going on it in July they are going to penalize me for 2 years. My ins is from where I retired in 2002. I hate to lose it, but I need ins that will pay for my meds. Thanks again for you info & help. How little I know about this new problem. I learned all I could about the other medical things I have been through, but this has throwed me & my husband for a loop!!!

 
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