What Does a Pulmonologist Do?


A pulmonologist is a doctor who specializes in caring for the lungs. They find and treat lung problems. They also work with you and your primary doctor to manage long-term lung conditions.

What do they treat?

Why would you need to see a pulmonologist? You may see one if you have symptoms like a chronic cough or breathing issues. You may see one if you have a lung infection. A pulmonologist helps you manage conditions like asthma and sleep apnea. They work with patients who have emphysema, COPD and cystic fibrosis. They treat lung cancer. And they care for a wide range of other issues.

Diagnosing you

To find out what's wrong, your pulmonologist looks at a range of factors. They give you a physical exam. They study your health history. They may order different types of tests. For example, you may need to have a CT scan or a bronchoscopy. They may give you a spirometry test or a sleep study. Your pulmonologist uses all of this info to develop a care plan that's right for you.

Working with you

A big part of a pulmonologist's job is sharing info with you. So they teach you about your lung health. They make sure you know about all of your care options. They explain how these options can affect you. They help you during treatment, and give you the support you need as you recover.


Your pulmonologist is a key part of your care team. For more info about lung health, talk to your doctor.