Stethoscope - The Mega Thread

kaaatielove

Forum Crew Member
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I got a Littman Master Cardiology as a graduation present from medic school.

The thing is awesome, I can hear myself think with it. Haven't had any problems with background noise.

Pricey but worth it in my opinion. The thing stays on me though in my cargo pocket until I need it then it goes right back in it's pocket. Having my name and graduation date on the tubes and my initials on the head helps make it pretty unmistakable as well.
I have the Littman Master Cardiology and absolutely love it! =)
 

m0nster986

B.S, Paramedic, FF
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My fiancee gave me a Master Cardiology with an engraving for Xmas! Abnormal breath sounds here I come!
 

Backblast

Forum Crew Member
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In 13 years of nursing, I've only used 2 different stethoscopes: The Littmann Master Classic and my current set of ears, the Littmann Cardiology III. The small side of my Cardiology III is converted to the bell, which works well for carotid bruits, etc. I'm hoping that this stethoscope will serve me as well in my transition to EMS as it has in the past.
 

EpiEMS

Forum Deputy Chief
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Loving my Littmann Lightweight. Not that I auscultate much other than BP and (basic) lung sounds. But it is lightweight!
 
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Michael M

Forum Ride Along
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3 weeks with my new Littmann Master Classic II and we love each other. Really a phantastic stethoscope, fits good, sounds perfect.

Roxette: ...listen to your heart...
 

Bullets

Forum Knucklehead
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I know the littman love, and i use to have a Cardiology III before it was pilfered.

I was looking to replace it, but the C3 was a gift and i wasnt ready to spend that kind of cash on a scope

I got an ADC 601, which is their "Cardiology" Scope, and it has a dual head and a bell for the smaller side, cost about $100 less then the C3 and i have noticed no difference in quality.

I just cant use the cheap dual tubes the squad buys anymore
 

socoemt

Forum Probie
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I use an ADC Adscope and I love it. I think I got it for $30 from a washed out emt student still in the box. I haven't had any issues using it. I used to have an old rappaport style, and I couldn't stand that one.

The Adscope is good enough for me, and not expensive enough that I couldn't replace it if someone got sticky fingers.
 

Mariemt

Forum Captain
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I got a Master Cardiology early on in my classes.
I can't hear very well. I had a Littmann select and I just couldn't get the pulse for a BP. My ambulance director was having me switch mine out with the one in the second ambulance for testing, but as we got into breath sounds, I couldn't take it 2 to 3 times a week.
Most EMTs will do fine with a cheaper stethoscope, but I love my Master Cardiology
 

EMS 911

Forum Probie
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I used a lightweight Littman (can't remember exact model) and it was a decent stethoscope for the price. It lasted through my basic clinicals and a few months in the field, but somehow broke during my first semester of medic clinicals. Not sure how because I am careful with my stethoscopes!

After that, I bought a Littman Master Cardiology. Sure, it cost more, but I can hear lung sounds/heart sounds/manual BP/etc wonderfully in a hospital next to a noisy ventilator or on the back of an ambulance. I have had it for about three years now and it is still as good as new! Well worth the price. I think I bought mine on allheart.com for half the usual price and paid a little extra to have my initials engraved and my full name on the tubing. I tend to misplace mine quite a bit, but thankfully, I have honest coworkers that return it to me after they see my name on it.

For now, buy an inexpensive Littman if you are able to. However, if you continue onto medic school or make a career of this, you could invest in a stethoscope later on. I had horrid experiences with any other brand than Littman and my $100 master cardiology has lasted with quite a bit of durability.
 

AzValley

Forum Lieutenant
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I use a Littmann Cardiology III and could not be more happier with. It has held up well and sounds great compared to most other I have tried.
 

takl23

Forum Crew Member
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I bought my wife a Cardiology III for a Christmas Present and she returned the favor! Great stethoscope.
 

Rick Tresnak

Forum Crew Member
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Can anyone please tell me the best stethoscope I should purchase. I need one before class starts? What else is good to have, besides a pen and notebook.


Thanks so much and Happy Holiday everyone!! :unsure:
Littmann Master Classic For the price it has great sound quality in the back of the bus and yet wont break the bank. I have done searches for them when I go to different websites and they all run about the same around $100. I think Innovative Rescue Solutions is running a deal currently, I would call and askas there website doesn't always show their special prices. I like the fact that you don't have a tuneable bell on the Master Classic. I have had mine for almost 10 years. The nice thing is you can replace the tubing and keep the bell for about half the price. I have used it as a flight medic as well.
 

greenmountains

Forum Crew Member
34
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I have a great Littman electronic that I got for chump change, but it is so expensive to replace, I dread the thought of losing it. I am told that some of the Chinese electronic scopes are great for the money, like $100 on eBay.
Somewhere there is a site devoted entirely to stethescope reviews; they do both an electronic analysis and subjective. Their best buy was a surprise and (I own an acoustic Littman in addition to the electronic) compares favorable with my acoustic Littman. It is also dirt cheap. Can't remember the name. You can find it.
 

PD the EMT

Forum Ride Along
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I'm in week 4 of my EMT-B training. I had purchased a $10 special from WallyWorld... That relationship was not going to work out. So I picked up the Littman Lightweight. Tunable diaphram, open bell, very light to carry and the acoustics are pretty decent. My wife (ER Nurse) has the Cardio II's, they are better but also much more expensive. For me the Lightweight Steth for just over $60 was perfect.

-Perry
 

greenmountains

Forum Crew Member
34
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Can anyone please tell me the best stethoscope I should purchase. I need one before class starts? What else is good to have, besides a pen and notebook.
Thanks so much and Happy Holiday everyone!! :unsure:
I have a tunable Littmann that is great, but not much better than the "best buy" they advise for like $25 or $30 (I forget the name). I have a Littmann electronic that is good for aging ears, but the battery always seems to die at an inopportune moment. Maybe a more recent electronic? I hear good news about the better Chinese electronic models. Avoid the Chinese acoustic models.
 

Honeybadger

Forum Crew Member
49
9
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I've become somewhat of a stethoscope collector. I have a basic one sided diaphragm that most rigs stock, a similar double sided, an omron sprague rappaport that I have used since emt school, two littmans, a classic ii and a cardiology iii which I found in an ancient spare rig that nobody claimed, replaced the tube and diaphragms for $70 and use as my secondary scope now, and a couple vintage bells.

I've used every littman currently made up to and including my cardiology iii, and I have to say, everything under the cardio iii is a pissing waste of money. The cardio iii didn't even sound good until I asked a cardiologist to show me how to use the tunable diaphragm and all of a sudden I could hear the fancy valve motion, squeaky bowel soundI and pinpoint the areas of gunk in a copd patient.

That all said, for ems purposes, the omron is better in so many ways. For starters, it's the standard stethoscope used by er docs at harborview, a level 1 trauma hospital. It's binaural, so two tubes, meaning louder sound. A flat projected diaphragm means that you get full contact and can even get decent lung sounds through clothes. Dual sides, bells, diaphragms, multiple earpieces and spare parts make it a long lasting bugger too.

I don't notice the creaking of my own knuckles with the omron, for lung sounds and bp's the volume is twice as loud as any littman, good in a rig or at the scene, and even though the sound is less crisp than a cardio iii, the overall volume makes it a better choice for us, and it's cheap enough to not worry about losing. Ear seals are faster, the bits pop inside the canal instead of the mushy balls littman uses.

I feel like a littman is a piece of jewelry for people in medicine. I have no need for a cardio iii. I only have it because I found it. If you need a new scope, buy an omron sprague-rappaport (it is heavy by comparison, but if a scope around your neck weighs you down, you need exercise...)

Linky
http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B000FERLKI?vs=1
 

Sunburn

Forum Crew Member
30
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I got myself a Littmann Classic S.E. II in my 3rd year of medschool.
It still looks and performs as new. Heart sounds are crisp and clear and pulmo sounds are distinct and easy to locate. And after 6 years still going strong. Didn't even have to change ear buds.
 

Mthom

Prodigy
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I got a Littmann Lightweight for my Basic program. It's pretty awesome! Mostly use it for blood pressures, but it's good for heart/lung/etc. Sounds as well.

I'm curious, how do you all clean your diaphragms? I'm terrified that alcohol wipes will damage mine
 
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