What tests are used to diagnose lung disease?
Often the initial test is a chest x-ray, and if an abnormality is found, a CT scan is typically performed to help better define the problem. If malignancy is suspected, your pulmonologist may order a CT guided biopsy to obtain tissue from the mass to confirm cancer. A PET scan usually follows to see if the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the chest or to other sites in the body. If cancer is suspected in the mediastinal (chest) lymph nodes, they are sampled either using endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS) or mediastinoscopy. A bronchoscopy and pulmonary function tests are also necessary to help determine lung resectability.