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The University of Chicago Medicine - Comer Children's Hospital

Diagnosing Cystic Fibrosis in Children

At the University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children's Hospital Cystic Fibrosis Center, we offer a variety of diagnostic tests that enable us to identify CF and monitor its progression.

Sweat Testing

Sweat tests measure the amount of salt in sweat and can diagnose CF, as a high salt level confirms that an individual has CF.

Lung Function Tests

Our pulmonary function laboratory offers a range of tests that measure lung function. Some of the tests available include:

  • Spirometry, which measures the volume and speed of air moving out of your child's lungs
  • Pulse oximetry and arterial blood gas testing for measuring oxygen in your child's blood

Other Tests

Our team may recommend other tests, such as

  • Chest X-rays
  • Sputum cultures to check for bacteria in sputum (mucus from the lungs) that can be signs of advanced CF
  • High-resolution computed tomography (CT) to inspect the airways for progression of CF

Genetic Testing and Counseling

Our team can help coordinate prenatal screening to determine if your fetus has CF. We also offer genetic testing to determine if you or your partner carries the genetic mutations that cause CF.

Our genetic counselors are available to answer questions and assist you and your family along the way.