Exercise-Induced Bronchoconstriction (EIB)

Exercise induced bronchoconstriction or EIB, is a combined breathing and exercise test. The test can help identify what type of breathing trouble you have, if any, when you exercise. A spirometry breathing test is done before and after you exercise on a treadmill. Spirometry can show how much air you can breathe in and out. It also shows how fast you can breathe in and out. The spirometry results are compared before and after you exercise to see what changes there are in your breathing.

A laryngoscopy may be scheduled after the EIB test. A laryngoscopy is often done to identify if your vocal cords may be causing you to have trouble breathing with exercise.


Preparing for the Test

Please follow these directions when getting ready for this test. These medicines will affect the results of some of these tests and may need to be stopped before the testing is done. If the medicine is not stopped, as your doctor says, before the test we will not be able to complete the test.

Stop this inhaled medicines for 7 days before your appointment:

  • Spiriva® (tiotropium)
  • Striverdi® (olodatarol)
  • Anora® (umeclidinium and vianterol)

Stop these inhaled medicines for 48 hours before your appointment:

  • Advair® (fluticasone and salmeterol)
  • Symbicort® (budesonide and formaterol)
  • Dulera® (mometasone and formoterol)
  • Breo® (fluticasone and vilanterol)
  • Arcapta (indacerterol)
  • Serevent® (salmeterol)
  • Foradil® (formoterol)
  • Serevent® (salmeterol)
  • Tudorza® (aclidinium)
  • Brovana® (arformoterol)
  • Perforomist™ (formoterol)
Stop these inhaled medicines for 24 hours before your appointment:
  • Atrovent® (ipratropium)
  • Combivent® (albuterol and ipatropium)
  • DuoNeb® (albuterol and ipatropium)
Stop these oral medicines for 24 hours before your appointment:
  • Accolate® (zafirlukast)
  • Zyflo® (zileuton)
  • Singular® (montelukast)

Stop these inhaled medicines for 6-8 hours before your appointment:

  • Proventil HFA®
  • Ventolin HFA®
  • ProAir® (Albuterol)
  • Xopenex® (Levalbuterol)

Continue to take all your other medicine as you usually do.

Exercising can drop blood sugar in patients who are taking medications to control diabetes. Bring your glucose meter, test strips, and a source of fast-acting glucose with you (such as glucose tablets or glucose gel).

Adults - If a laryngoscopy is scheduled at the same time, do not eat for 2 hours before the test is scheduled.

Children - If a laryngoscopy is scheduled at the same time, do not eat for 3 hours before the test is scheduled.

Patient exercises on the treadmill to see if their airways will react.
A patient exercises on the treadmill to see if her airways will react.

During the Test

You will do a number of breathing tests before and after you exercise. The technician will explain what you need to do during the breathing and exercise test. Before the testing begins EKG electrodes will be placed on your chest to monitor your heart. A pulse oximeter will be placed on your earlobe or fingertip to monitor your oxygen.

Once ready, you will do the breathing tests, usually spirometry. After doing the breathing tests you will exercise on a treadmill or a bicycle (children and teenagers). A physician or physician’s assistant will be present during the exercise test. This test may be ordered inhaling cold air while exercising. If this is the case, you will breathe on a mouthpiece while exercising. After the exercise is finished, you will do the breathing tests again.

If your doctor has scheduled you for a laryngoscopy this will be done right after you exercise. During the laryngoscopy a doctor will place a small tube (fiberoptic probe) in your nose. The tube is passed through your nose to the back of your throat. The movement of the vocal cords can be seen with the probe. Please do not eat 2 - 3 hours prior to the test if a laryngoscopy has been scheduled.


Length of the Test

The exercise testing time often takes 1½ hour. Actual exercise time does not take 1½ hours. The rest of the test period is to prepare you for the test and observe you after the test.


Day of the Test

On the day of your scheduled test, report to room A310a in the Pulmonary Physiology Unit, (PPU), located on the 3rd floor of the May building. If you have questions please call the Pulmonary Physiology Unit at 303.398.1530.

Get directions to or view a campus map of National Jewish Health.

 

This information has been approved by Amy Olson, MD, MSPH and Becky Kolenbrander, RRT, AE-C (November 2014).

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