A swimmer takes a breath mid-stroke in a pool.

Lung health

Philips Respironics has announced a recall of certain CPAP, BiLevel PAP and ventilator devices. Register your device to see if it’s been affected. For more information, visit Philips Respironics’s recall notice.

Our board-certified pulmonologists diagnose, treat and manage even the most complex lung conditions, including severe asthma, interstitial lung disease, lung nodules and COPD and lung cancer.

We use the latest research, techniques and technologies in pulmonary medicine to make sure you’re getting the best treatment available.

From your first appointment and throughout the treatment process, we provide expert treatment options with care focused on you.

Every year, millions of Americans are diagnosed with lung conditions like severe asthma, emphysema or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Lung conditions can affect your breathing and make it difficult for you to do the things you enjoy. At HealthPartners and Park Nicollet, our board-certified pulmonologists work closely with allergists, primary care doctors, respiratory therapists, and other members of our team to provide care for even the most complex lung conditions to improve your quality of life and help you continue to do what you love.

We provide leading treatments for respiratory conditions, comprehensive care for difficult to control asthma, pulmonary rehabilitation to improve exercise capacity and personalized treatment for chronic lung conditions. With our pulmonary clinics in Minnesota and western Wisconsin, you can always find care close to home.

Lung conditions we treat

We treat all common and complex conditions that might affect your lungs. We regularly treat conditions like:


This is a chronic condition that causes your airways to constrict when they’re irritated, making it difficult to breathe. Symptoms can range from mild to severe. Asthma can be made worse by allergies, irritants, and infections. We often co-manage asthma with our allergist partners who specialize in allergy treatment. We use all of the latest treatment options, including non-steroid injectable medications, and will work with you on a customized treatment plan.

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

COPD describes chronic conditions that make it difficult to breathe, including chronic bronchitis and emphysema. COPD affects millions of people, and it’s commonly caused by smoking. We’ll work with you to create a personalized treatment plan to manage your COPD. Treatment plans often include pulmonary rehabilitation, lifestyle changes and medications.

Interstitial lung disease

Interstitial lung disease is a condition caused by scar tissue on the inside of your lungs that makes it difficult to breathe. It can be caused by breathing in hazardous materials over a long period of time or by an autoimmune condition. While treatments can’t heal the scar tissue, we can help manage the symptoms. Treatments commonly include a combination of medications, oxygen therapy, and pulmonary rehabilitation.

We also diagnose and treat:

  • Mesothelioma
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Pulmonary hypertension
  • Pleural disorders
  • Sarcoidosis

Symptoms of respiratory conditions

Many different conditions can affect your lungs, and the symptoms can vary from shortness of breath, to a chronic cough, to not being able to exercise. If you have concerns about your breathing, it may be time to see a doctor so we can help you find answers and create a treatment plan.

Diagnosing respiratory conditions

During your appointment, we’ll talk with you about your symptoms and we’ll perform an exam. We also offer video visits where we can diagnose and treat many common lung conditions. Many of our patients can get the treatment they need with a combination of in-person visits and video visits.

If more information is needed, these tests are commonly used to diagnose respiratory conditions:

Lung function tests

Lung function tests are used to test the ability of your lungs. These tests measure how well you breathe and the amount of air your lungs can hold. They’re usually used to diagnose, evaluate, and manage conditions like asthma, COPD and other conditions that might make it difficult for you to breathe. Common lung function tests include spirometry, nitric oxide tests and arterial blood gas tests.

Imaging tests

X-rays, CT scans and ultrasounds are all types of imaging tests. Imaging tests are non-invasive tests that help us see what’s going on inside your lungs. We use imaging tests to look for growths, damage, fluid build-up and other things that might be causing your symptoms. Imaging tests might be used to diagnose COPD, pneumonia, emphysema and other conditions.

Treatment options for lung conditions

No matter what kind of lung condition you have, our pulmonologists will work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan. Common treatment options might include:


We might prescribe medicine to treat many different types of lung conditions, including COPD, asthma and infections. We’ll work with you to find the medicine or combination of medicines that work best for you. Types of medications commonly prescribed include bronchodilators, oral steroids and antibiotics.

Biologic therapies

For lung conditions caused by autoimmune diseases, we might prescribe biologic therapies. A biologic therapy is a type of treatment that targets a gene, protein or cell that is involved with the condition. Conditions like allergic asthma might be treated with biologic therapies if more standard medicines don’t improve your condition.

Pulmonary rehabilitation

This treatment is used to treat chronic or severe lung conditions like pulmonary hypertension, interstitial lung disease and emphysema. During pulmonary rehabilitation, a combination of exercise, lifestyle education and nutritional counseling is used to improve your breathing ability.

Oxygen therapy

Some conditions make it hard for your body to get the oxygen it needs. In these cases, we might prescribe supplemental oxygen to help deliver oxygen to your lungs and bloodstream. We’ll talk to you about whether you need oxygen only while you sleep, only while you exercise or throughout the day.

Interventional pulmonology

Depending on your condition, we might recommend additional treatment options, including interventional pulmonology services. Interventional pulmonology describes minimally invasive procedures that are used to diagnose and treat many different lung conditions.

Sedation or local anesthesia are often used to make sure the procedure is pain-free and help keep you comfortable. We’ll determine which type of biopsy will work best and answer all your questions before the procedure.

We offer a wide range of procedures to diagnose your lung condition, including:

Lung Biopsies – Sometimes, a sample of the lung needs to be examined in the lab to diagnose a lung condition. This type of test is called a biopsy.

Bronchoscopy – This examination allows your doctor to examine and collect tissue from the inside of your lungs with a thin tube carrying a small camera.

Endobronchial ultrasound bronchoscopy (EBUS) – This type of bronchoscopy is aided by ultrasound technology and allows your doctor to examine and diagnose enlarged lymph nodes in the lungs.

Navigational bronchoscopy – This type of bronchoscopy uses a CT scan to help your doctor guide the camera directly nodules or other areas of concern in the lungs.

These procedures include bronchoscopy, biopsies and the evaluation of nodules or other abnormalities in your lungs.

We’ll recommend the most minimally invasive procedure for your condition and help you understand exactly what to expect before, during and after the procedure.

Palliative care

Palliative care is a medical specialty that supports people with serious illnesses. Palliative care specialists provide physical and emotional support for people of all ages at all stages of their illness. Our team of pulmonologists works closely with palliative care specialists to help keep you comfortable and maintain your quality of life while you manage your lung symptoms.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)