What to Expect at Your First Pulmonologist Appointment?
Get trusted and specialized treatment for a wide range of pulmonary conditions including asthma, cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pneumonia, chronic bronchitis, and more by board-certified Dr. Luis Mesa MD. For more information, contact us today or book an appointment online. We are conveniently located at 1250 E Hallandale Beach Blvd Suite 205 A, Hallandale Beach, FL 33009.
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A pulmonologist is a medical specialist who diagnoses and treats conditions that affect the respiratory system including the lungs, pharynx, bronchi, trachea, and any other organs that assist in breathing. Conditions that are commonly treated by pulmonologists include asthma, cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pneumonia, and chronic bronchitis. If you are struggling with being able to breathe normally, experiencing shortness of breath, or have noticed any other irregularities in your lung function, a pulmonologist will likely be able to help.
When you are visiting your pulmonologist, you will likely be visiting the respiratory system specialist to assess specific symptoms that you may be experiencing. To support them in providing you with an accurate diagnosis, it is important to ensure that you are well-prepared for your appointment by keeping track of your specific symptoms including frequency, severity, and any other relevant information. Some questions that you can keep in mind to ask your pulmonologist during your visit include:
• What preventative measures can I take to ensure my lung health?
• How might my respiratory disorder affect my daily life?
• What will treatment look like moving forward?
• How will I know if my condition is worsening/what should I do to prevent it from worsening?
The specific questions you ask will differ depending on your specific health needs, but it is very important that you understand your specific diagnosis and what it means to your general health and lifestyle.
There are a couple of different components that take place during a pulmonary exam, with some patients requiring a complete pulmonary function exam that will take anywhere from 45 to 90 minutes, and others only requiring a portion of that test to be completed, taking only 15 to 45 minutes to achieve the required results. The precise method that is required for the pulmonary exam is dependent on the symptoms and condition that may be at play, so your pulmonologist will only provide testing if they deem it necessary for an accurate diagnosis. Unless otherwise stated, most patients can expect their pulmonary exam to take around 30 minutes in total.
If this is your first time visiting a pulmonologist, the preparation for the initial appointment will be fairly similar to that of any other type of medical appointment in that you should take note of any experienced symptoms, including if any have worsened or gotten better over time, as well as what you may have noticed that improves or worsens your symptoms. Your pulmonologist will also likely ask if you have a family history of chronic lung disease or similar symptoms to what you are experiencing, so it is recommended that you check with your family members if your family history of the condition is unknown. It is also highly recommended that you write down a list of any medications you are currently taking as well as any health conditions from which you have previously been diagnosed if relevant. Lastly, if you are feeling anxious or worried about your first appointment with a pulmonologist, you can plan to bring a trusted family member or friend to accompany you to your appointment.
Your first appointment with a pulmonologist will likely include providing them with a detailed family and medical history as well as a physical examination and assessment of any test results that you may have obtained before the appointment. The pulmonologist will want to have a good understanding of your experienced symptoms and basic health characteristics including your weight, temperature, height, oxygen levels, and blood pressure. They may also wish to perform diagnostic testing during this appointment including a physical exam to check for reduced blood circulation or swelling, a spirometry test, an exercise oximetry test, a CT scan, or a chest X-ray. It is possible that you are required to complete a blood test, imaging test, or pulmonary function test before the appointment, in which case you may be required to electronically send the results or bring the physical copies to the appointment for the pulmonologist to review.
Dr. Luis J. Mesa, MD offers a wide variety of pulmonary and sleep services such as general pulmonary medicine, sleep medicine, internal medicine, critical care medicine, and many more. We are conveniently located at 1250 E Hallandale Beach Blvd Suite 205 A, Hallandale Beach, FL 33009. We serve patients from Hallandale Beach FL, Aventura FL, Hollywood FL, Golden Glades FL, Miramar FL, Hialeah FL, Fort Lauderdale FL, and BEYOND.
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