The lungs are a pair of organs located in the chest that perform the function of absorbing oxygen into the blood stream and releasing carbon dioxide from the blood. The lungs therefore have two major functions that occur to enable this process. Firstly, there is the process of air actually being inhaled into the lungs. Secondly, there is the process of blood circulation within the lungs. These two processes need to be functioning at or near the optimum level in order to ensure that oxygen is being properly absorbed into the blood stream. A lack of oxygen in the blood leads to many different complications. Over time, this can even lead to the death of the individual, especially if the amount of oxygen is severely deficient.
The ventilation perfusion lung scan is conducted to help determine the state of both these factors. The ventilation part of the test involves the inhalation of air whereas the perfusion part of the test involves the estimation of the flow of blood in the lungs. Each lung has several small sac like formations that allow blood to come into contact with air so that the gas exchange can take place.
The ventilation perfusion lung scan is actually two different tests conducted one after another. Ventilation perfusion lung scan involves the individual breathing in air that is radioactive. This air is then followed using the scanning machines as it flows into and out of the lungs. The volume and efficiency of air flow in the lungs can be estimated using this test. Following this, the patient's blood will be injected with a radio isotope. This is then followed as it moves through the blood stream to the lungs. The flow of blood is therefore estimated by this part of the test.
The ventilation perfusion lung scan for pulmonary hypertension is conducted on an outpatient basis. The patient does not need to make any preparations for such a test. There are no major ventilation perfusion lung scan complications that are known to occur. The test is fairly easy for the patient and he or she can return home immediately after the ventilation perfusion lung scanning has been completed. In some cases, the doctor may request the patient to wait until some results are produced. If there is some serious lung issue, the patient will be asked to stay in the hospital. The ventilation perfusion lung scan is subject to interpretation which is why the experience of the doctor is of prime importance.More articles from the Medical Tests Category