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11 Best Stethoscopes for Doctors

by Jessica Hegg May 15, 2018 0 Comments

Doctor with stethoscope and a senior patient

When it comes to purchasing medical instruments, quality should always be the most important factor, so choosing from the best stethoscopes for doctors is a must. You’ll want to make sure your stethoscope is sturdy, easy to use, and provides very precise readings. These eleven stethoscopes are some of the best options available in terms of function and price.

Top 11 Stethoscopes for Doctors

Model Brand Lowest Price
1. Lightweight II Stethoscope 3M Littmann
BEST PRICE »
2. Cardiology IV Stethoscope 3M Littmann
BEST PRICE »
3. Stethoscope Vive Precision
BEST PRICE »
4. Sprague Rappaport Stethoscope Omron
BEST PRICE »
5. Cardiology Stethoscope Vorfreude
BEST PRICE »
6. Lightweight Dual-Head Stethoscope MDF Instruments
BEST PRICE »
7. Lightweight Clinical Stethoscope American Diagnostic
BEST PRICE »
8. Clinician Stethoscope ADC
BEST PRICE »
9. Dual Head Stethoscope MDF Instruments
BEST PRICE »
10. Cardiology Stethoscope Passionate Care
BEST PRICE »
11. Classic Cardiology Stethoscope Paramed
BEST PRICE »

1. Lightweight II Stethoscope by 3M Littmann Lightweight II Stethoscope by 3M Littmann

This stethoscope is the best starter stethoscope for medical students, as it is both easy to use and medical-grade. Its teardrop shape allows it to slide underneath blood pressure cuffs, and its anatomically-designed headset is angled to comfortably fit in your ear canal. The stethoscope bell has a nonchill rim to provide patient comfort while using it against your patient’s bare skin.

Pros:
  • Captures low- and high-frequency noises
  • Long, durable tubing
  • Perfect for taking blood pressure readings
Cons:
  • Bulky and a bit difficult to handle

2. Cardiology IV Stethoscope by 3M Littmann Cardiology IV Stethoscope by 3M Littmann

3M Littmann’s cardiology stethoscope provides high-quality acoustics that allow you to hear high and low-frequency sounds. Its tunable diaphragm allows you to hear subtle noises by adjusting the pressure on the chest piece. The stethoscope tubing is made to last long and resist tearing, staining, or overall wear.

Pros:
  • Medical-grade design
  • Easily tunable diaphragm
  • Sturdy tubing
Cons:
  • Short tubing length

3. Stethoscope by Vive Precision Stethoscope by Vive Precision

Vive Precision’s stethoscope utilizes a dual-head chest piece and stainless steel diaphragm to provide sensitive acoustics. Its non-chill rings help your patient stay comfortable by reducing the feeling of cold metal against their bare skin. The stethoscope’s silicone ear tips create a seal against your ears to eliminate distracting noises while you take readings.

Pros:
  • Flexible tubing
  • Lightweight, yet durable
  • Designed to provide patient comfort
Cons:
  • Ear tips feel tight

4. Sprague Rappaport Stethoscope by Omron Sprague Rappaport Stethoscope by Omron

This stethoscope by Omron provides medical-grade quality at an affordable price. Its ear tips provide a firm, secure seal that helps reduce ambient noise and detect subtle noises. Every stethoscope comes with three sizes of open bells and two sizes of diaphragms so you can adjust it depending on the patient.

Pros:
  • Chrome-plated chest piece
  • Comes with storage case
  • Latex-free tubing
Cons:
  • Heavier weight than some stethoscopes

5. Cardiology Stethoscope by Vorfreude Cardiology Stethoscope by Vorfreude

Vorfreude’s cardiology stethoscope is equipped with a tunable diaphragm that allows you to pinpoint subtle sounds or abnormalities while using it. Its dual-tube design eliminates outside distractions so you can closely monitor your patient’s readings. The stethoscope’s headset and ear tips are angled so they fit and seal against your ear canals.

Pros:
  • Hypoallergenic and latex-free
  • Long, flexible tubing
  • Comes with a pupil pen light
Cons:
  • Headset can shift while using it

6. Lightweight Dual-Head Stethoscope by MDF Instruments Lightweight Dual-Head Stethoscope by MDF Instruments

This stethoscope by MDF Instruments is made from a lightweight aluminum material that offers durability and precise readings. Its ergonomic design ensures comfort for both the doctor and the patient while it’s being used. The stethoscope’s tubing is made from a thick, latex PVC tubing that is resistant to breaking or tearing.

Pros:
  • Latex-free tubing
  • Both high-quality and economical
  • Designed to provide high-quality sound performance
Cons:
  • Rigid, uncomfortable tubing

7. Lightweight Clinical Stethoscope by American Diagnostic Lightweight Clinical Stethoscope by American Diagnostic

American Diagnostic’s stethoscope is highly sensitive and easily picks up high- or low-frequency sounds and possible abnormalities. It is made from a lightweight aluminum that allows you to wear it comfortably all day. Every stethoscope comes with an extra diaphragm and ear tips in case of accidental damage.

Pros:
  • Comes with a name tag
  • Non-chill bell
  • Flexible headset
Cons:
  • Flimsy tubing

8. Clinician Stethoscope by ADC Clinician Stethoscope by ADC

This stethoscope by ADC is made from a durable zinc alloy that simultaneously enhances its acoustic performance and ergonomics. Its headset is flexible and seals against your ears to provide a clear sound while you’re monitoring your patients. Every stethoscope comes with two extra pairs of ear tips and an ID tag to keep it from getting lost.

Pros:
  • Lightweight, easy to carry
  • Designed for doctors, medical students, and EMTs
  • Durable tubing
Cons:
  • Color may scratch off over time

9. Dual Head Stethoscope by MDF Instruments Dual Head Stethoscope by MDF Instruments

This stethoscope comes with three bells, which allows you to read and diagnose adult, pediatric, and infant patients. Its headset is easily adjustable and contours to your skin comfortably. The stethoscope comes with several different ear tips, which allows you to choose a size that seals against your ears.

Pros:
  • Offers clear, precise acoustics
  • Handcrafted design
  • Latex-free
Cons:
  • Bulky, uncomfortable to wear all day

10. Cardiology Stethoscope by Passionate Care Cardiology Stethoscope by Passionate Care

Passionate Care’s stethoscope allows you to easily hear subtle noises and abnormalities in your patients’ heart, lungs, and intestines. Its tubing is thick and durable, which prevents it from compressing and muffling the sound. The ear tips provide a tight seal that prevents outside noises from distracting you while you take the readings.

Pros:
  • Sturdy, but lightweight
  • Soft ear tips
  • Designed for medical and nursing students
Cons:
  • Difficult to adjust the headset

11. Classic Cardiology Stethoscope by Paramed Classic Cardiology Stethoscope by Paramed

Paramed’s single-head stethoscope captures both high- and low-frequency sounds with the same level of precision. Its headset is anatomically designed to channel sound directly into your ear canal and provide high-quality acoustics. Every stethoscope comes with two replacement ear tips, an extra diaphragm, an ID tag, and a carrying case so that no matter where you use your stethoscope, you’ll be prepared.

Pros:
  • Non-chill bell
  • Can be used on adult, pediatric, infant, and veterinary patients
  • Latex-free
Cons:
  • Doesn’t mask ambient noise as well

How to Take Care of a Stethoscope

Keeping your stethoscope in good condition is important to ensure that you’re getting accurate readings. Like many medical instruments, stethoscopes need to be taken care of in specific ways to prevent damage. Try these three tips when taking care of your stethoscope to help it work well for a long time.

  • Keep Your Stethoscope Away From Extreme Temperatures

If your stethoscope is exposed to extreme hot or cold, its tuning can warp. To prevent this from happening, never leave your stethoscope outdoors or in the car. Store your stethoscope in a room temperature place, preferably in a stethoscope case .

Find the six best stethoscope cases here.

  • Disinfect Your Stethoscope Regularly

Disinfecting your stethoscope every day, even if you only use it for one patient, will keep it in good condition. Use 70% isopropyl alcohol to clean your stethoscope. Dip a washcloth in the isopropyl alcohol and wipe the entire stethoscope down, letting it air dry before you use it again.

  • Never Immerse Your Stethoscope in Liquid

If you try to sterilize your stethoscope by dipping it in water or a cleaning solution, you can seriously damage it. Instead, clean your stethoscope with a washcloth. Dip the washcloth in soapy water or a cleaning solution and wring it out until it doesn’t drip water. Then, wipe off the surface of the stethoscope and dry it off with a separate washcloth.

Tips for Using a Stethoscope

Even the best doctors can always learn something new about their medical instruments. Keep these four tips in mind to make sure you’re using your stethoscope correctly.

  • Wear Fitted Ear Tips

Your stethoscope will work most effectively if you use it with ear tips that fit snugly against your ears. Most stethoscopes come with several different ear tip sizes. Test out each of the ear tip pairs to determine which ones give you the clearest sound.

  • Use the Stethoscope On Bare Skin

When using the stethoscope on a patient, place the bell on bare skin, as thick or layered clothing can muffle the sound. Likewise, if your patient has long hair covering the area you need to use the stethoscope on, pull it up and out of the way.

If you have a blood pressure cuff, you can use it with your stethoscope to monitor your patient’s blood pressure. Check out the five best manual blood pressure cuffs here.

  • Check Your Stethoscope for Damage

If your stethoscope is broken, you will not be able to use it efficiently. Inspect your stethoscope regularly to make sure it’s still in good condition. Replace your stethoscope if you notice seriously damaged or loose pieces that cannot be replaced.

  • Don’t Place Your Fingers on the Edge of the Bell

Never put your fingertips on the edge of the bell, as this can muffle your stethoscope’s sound. You’ll be able to hear your patient’s internal organs best if you keep your fingers around the center of the bell. Keep the stethoscope tube from rubbing against your patient’s bare skin as well so the sound remains clear.

When taking care of a patient, you’ll want to monitor their vital signs carefully. Read about the five vital signs you should be checking regularly here.

Find the Best Stethoscopes for Doctors

Whether you’re a doctor with an established practice or you just started medical school, you need a good stethoscope. Stethoscopes allow you to monitor your patients’ vital signs quickly and efficiently. Making sure that the one you buy is high-quality will help you take helpful and precise readings. All of the stethoscopes listed here are guaranteed to provide accuracy and precision while you’re working with a patient.

Sources:

https://www.littmann.com/3M/en_US/littmann-stethoscopes/my-stethoscope/using-your-stethoscope/care/

https://beststethoscopeguide.com/how-to-use-a-stethoscope/

http://www.safetyhow.com/index.php/Tips_To_Use_A_Stethoscope_In_A_Proper_Way?action=print

Jessica Hegg
Jessica Hegg

Jessica Hegg is the content manager at ViveHealth.com. Avid gym-rat and nutrition enthusiast, she’s interested in all things related to staying active and living healthy lifestyle. Through her writing she works to share valuable information aimed at overcoming obstacles and improving the quality of life for others.



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