Facing the noise: Addressing the endemic variability in D LCO testing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Single-breath diffusing capacity of the lung for carbon monoxide (D LCO) is a common pulmonary function test that measures the ability of the lung to exchange gas across the alveolar-capillary interface. D LCO testing is used to narrow the differential diagnosis of obstructive and restrictive lung disease, to aid in disability and transplant assessment, and to monitor medication toxicity. The variability in the measurement limits the utility of the test. Variability is attributable to differences in equipment, testing conditions, patient factors, and reference equations. Laboratories can minimize variability by ensuring that equipment meets recommended standards, implementing effective quality control programs, standardizing testing conditions and testing procedures, and accounting for pertinent patient characteristics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17-25
Number of pages9
JournalRespiratory care
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2012


  • Carbon monoxide
  • Diffusing capacity
  • Lung function
  • Pulmonary function
  • Quality control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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