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Dr. Dinesh Goyal
Dr. Dinesh Goyal


Exp 24 years

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What Is a Pulmonologist?

A pulmonologist is a specialized doctor who treats problems related to the respiratory system.To become a pulmonologist or a pediatric pulmonologist, after graduating from medical school, a doctor needs to complete an internal medicine or pediatrics residency program, respectively,followed by additional fellowship training in pulmonary disease. Optional training can be obtained for pulmonology subspecialties or dual certification (such as critical care and pulmonary disease).

Pulmonologists treat infections, inflammations, structural problems, and tumors of the respiratory system. Diseases commonly managed by pulmonologists include asthma, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), lung cancer,occupational lung diseases, cystic fibrosis, sleep disorders, pulmonary hypertension, pulmonary embolism, and tuberculosis.

To manage complex cases, pulmonologists often work closely with professionals in other specialties such as oncology, thoracic surgery, or critical care.

When Should I See a Pulmonologist?
  • Your primary care provider will refer you to a pulmonologist. You may need to see a pulmonologist if you notice symptoms of breathing or lung problems. These symptoms may include: Continuous coughing or blood while coughing
  • Prolonged mucus/sputum production
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing while sleeping
  • Chest discomfort or pain

You may also need to see a pulmonologist if you have a family history of inherited respiratory diseases such as cystic fibrosis.
And although you don’t need to see a specialist to quit smoking, a pulmonologist also may help with smoking cessation.

What Kind of Tests Does a Pulmonologist Perform or Recommend?

Your pulmonologist may request or perform tests or procedures such as the following:
  • Imaging tests including chest x-ray, CT scan, or ultrasound
  • Pulmonary function tests such as spirometry or lung volume tests
  • Arterial blood gas tests
  • Bronchoscopy
  • Endobronchial ultrasound
  • Bronchoalveolar lavage
  • Thoracocentesis
  • Lung biopsy
  • Sputum tests such as cytology or culture
  • Tests for tuberculosis such as tuberculin skin test (TST)
  • Sweat tests for cystic fibrosis
  • Sleep study

What Questions Should I Ask a Pulmonologist?

You may want to askthese kinds of questions:
  • What do my test results indicate? How severe is my condition?
  • What are the treatment options available? How long will I need treatment?
  • What are my chances of a successful recovery?
  • What makes my condition worse? How can I prevent it from getting worse?
  • Are there any side effects of the treatment and medicines?
  • Are there times when I should take extra medicine?
  • Are there times when I should avoid being outside or exercising? Are there any other restrictions?
  • Are there any changes in my lifestyle or diet that will help?
  • Can I travel? What precautions do I need?
  • What symptoms indicate that I should call a doctor?
  • What symptoms indicate a medical emergency?

Doctors waiting to answer your question

Dr. Dinesh Goyal
Dr. Dinesh Goyal


Exp 24 years

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