Cambridge Cardiac Care Centre


The "quick breath" test

A spirometry test is a very simple and quick test to assess lung function and capacity. Entirely painless and non-invasive, the spirometry test simply requires the patient to take long deep breaths in and then exhale as forcefully and as long as they can into a tube. The process is repeated three times, on average. The amount and speed of the exhaled air are recorded by the attached computer and are then analyzed by the cardiologist to assess the cause of shortness of breath, and to determine the possible development of restrictive or obstructive lung disease. Although the spirometry is not a definitive cardiac test on its own, it does provide an important piece of the diagnostic puzzle and in conjunction with other tests, provides vital information for the development of a treatment plan.

Our Cardiovascular Technologist Team

Our highly trained CVT team is made up of some of the region’s most accomplished Cardiovascular Technologists, skilled in ECG, holter monitoring, stress testing, ambulatory blood pressure monitoring and spectrometry testing. With an emphasis on skill-building and a commitment to the pursuit of scientific excellence, our Cardiovascular Technologists (CVT) are the eyes and ears of the clinic, providing thorough and reliable clinical reports that are the underpinning of everything we do.

What if the spirometry test triggers an asthma attack?

If the heavy and taxed breathing that is required of the spirometry test triggers the beginning of an asthma attack or causes short, laboured breathing, you will be allowed to take your prescribed puffer.

Asthma pump

What to expect during your spirometry test

Once you have been called to the exam room, the technologist will explain the procedure and ask you about any medications, supplements and puffers that you may be taking. Seated in the same position, you will be given a disposable tube that you will put in your mouth and seal with your lips. You will take a long, deep breath in and when the technologist gives you the signal, you must blow out all the air from your lungs as forcefully as you possibly can. With a burst, you must completely empty your lungs. You will be asked to repeat this cycle at least 3 times. That’s it! The test is that simple. The cardiologist will analyze the results and write a report in a timely fashion. Your healthcare provider will then discuss the results with you, once they have received the cardiologist’s report.

Is this test covered by OHIP?

Yes. OHIP covers your spirometry test, provided it has been ordered for medical, diagnostic purposes. On some occasions, patients require a spirometry test for insurance or ministry of transportation assessment in which case, OHIP does not cover the test and the cost of the test is charged to the patient or their insurance directly.

Wait Times

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Cardiac Test Routine Test Wait Time Urgent Test Wait Time
ABPM 2 weeks Same day
ECG 24 hours Same day
Echocardiogram 2 weeks 36 hours
Stress Test (Exercise / Treadmill) 2 weeks Same day
Stress Echocardiogram 2 weeks 24 hours
Holter Monitor - 24 Hour 2 weeks 24 hours
Holter Monitor - 48 Hour 2 weeks 24 hours
Holter Monitor – 72 Hour 2 weeks 48 hours
Holter Monitor - 2 Weeks 2 weeks 48 hours
Spirometry 24 hours Same day

The above wait-times indicate the standard benchmarks that Cambridge Cardiac Care strives to meet each and every day. Unforeseen circumstances and Public Health mandates, may effect these wait times. Rest assured that timely access is a driving force at CCC: we will get you in as soon as possible, based on your assessed level of urgency.