Despite the advancement in medical technology, stethoscope still holds significant diagnostic value. Stethoscope allows the doctors to listen to body sounds physically. Certainly, there are echocardiography systems but it is not probable for every medical practitioner to possess handheld echocardiography. Therefore the significance of using stethoscope during physical exam cannot be ignored.
Nurses always experience a question from their first day training. What is the ideal stethoscope? Actually, the answer will depend on several things like the kind of practice and patient.
FAQ’s about stethoscopes
What features to consider in an ideal stethoscope?
According to information provided on http://www.stethoscopelab.com/nurses-guide/ a good stethoscope will include the following features.
- Thick dual tube
- Steel chest piece
- Flexible diaphragm of high quality
- Angled soft ear-tips
What to avoid?
Avoid stethoscope with the aluminium chest piece, thin tubes and hard non-angled ear-piece
What length tube is good?
This is totally a personal preference. Whatever feels good because there is hardly any functional difference between standard and long length tubes.
What is personal preference?
Personal preference will include stethoscope weight, materials, tube length, and special applications (in case you work in the Peds).
What are main stethoscope kinds?
- Single head with only diaphragm fit for listening to heart sounds
- Dual head including bell and diaphragm preferred for general purpose usage
- Sprague Rappaport having external dual tubes appears good on TV soaps
Is tunable stethoscope good?
Tunable diaphragm allows you to listen to high and low frequency sounds without removing chest piece.
Can you sterilize an electronic stethoscope?
Stethoscope needs to be wiped with 70%isopropyl alcohol solution between every patient. Never subject it to any sterilization process.
Why is dual tube ideal?
Human brain is configured to hear sounds in stereo than in mono. Brian rejects noise and detects subtle sounds.
What are advantages of electronic stethoscope?
Lung and heart sounds can potentially be missed with normal hearing, so amplification with ambient noise cutback helps to hear sounds necessary to listen in.
Finally, make sure to change your stethoscope after every five years because the rubber parts deteriorate.