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stethescope question

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by ghostface, Dec 1, 2005.

  1. ghostface

    ghostface Junior Member

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    should one buy a stethescope before school starts (online, etc.), or is it better to buy from a school bookstore? (thinking about xmas presents)
     
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  3. DropkickMurphy

    DropkickMurphy Membership Revoked
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    Don't get it from the bookstore, they engage in price gouging.

    I've purchased all of my stethoscopes from the same EMS supplier and have always be been pleased with their prices and service: http://www.buyemp.com/dept.asp?dept%5Fid=10306 I'm partial to the Littman stethoscopes, but that's just my opinion.
     
  4. Flopotomist

    Flopotomist I love the Chicago USPS
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    Litmann Cardio II is what I have now, and I love it. YOu can get it online for less than the bookstores.
     
  5. QofQuimica

    QofQuimica Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting....
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    I'm going to be getting one as a graduation present in May. But I'm not supposed to know about it, so I have about six months to practice being surprised. :D
     
  6. futuremd22283

    futuremd22283 Titleist
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    Definitely buy online or from wholesale medical supply house. Bookstores charge ridiculous amounts. I bought a Littmann Classic II Se from Redding Medical online for a pretty good price. I love the stethescope, check em out. Good luck!
     
  7. gonadotropins

    gonadotropins Member
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    How come you need multiple stethoscopes?
     
  8. MollyMalone

    MollyMalone I'm a Score Quadruplet
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    Oftentimes when school starts they'll have a Littmann rep come around and you can get direct pricing. That's how I got my awesome stethoscope for almost 50% off retail in nursing school. You can find some good deals online, though, just comparison shop like mad.
     
  9. ShyRem

    ShyRem I need more coffee.
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    Try allheart.com. really good prices.
     
  10. -Goose-

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    tru dat


    i bought a master cardiology III black edition last year (overkill, i know, but you need all the help you can get bouncing around in the back of an ambulance with the potholes in this town)... it was cheap (well, on sale at least) and its the skrill.
     
  11. ShyRem

    ShyRem I need more coffee.
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    I actually have several stethoscopes - my first one I gave to my husband to put in his med kit for work. I got a littman classic II when I went to paramedic school. I got a littman pediatric as a gift from coworkers when I was running a crapload of critical and dying children on the ambulance.

    I currently use the classic II and the peds as a medic. I was extremely grateful to have that peds stethoscope at times....
     
  12. robotsonic

    robotsonic Senior Member
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    If you don't have a stethoscope yet, wait until you get to med school to buy one. At my school, we pool our orders as a class to get a discount. Pretty much everyone who didn't own a stethoscope already opted to buy with the class. It saves money.

    Plus, you don't need it right away. In fact, you could really get away with not having one for the entire first two years (even if your school claims that you get "tons of clinical experience" in the first two years). :laugh:
     
  13. lattimer13

    lattimer13 good boy!
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    best advice so far.
     
  14. JonnyG

    JonnyG IN the hospitals....
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    my school gave us all cardiac IIIs so don't buy until you know hte situation and yes its not necessary to have them right away.
     
  15. anon-y-mouse

    anon-y-mouse Senior Member
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    1) only osteopathic schools give away littmanns :) this is the pre-allo board. count on having to buy one.
    2) get a littmann cardiology III from allheart.com -- the rep will give you a price that is +/-$5-10 of that price, so it's not worth buying elsewhere if you know *where* to buy. http://www.steeles.com/ is also good. plus, if you buy online, you can get it engraved with your name!
    3) i think the master cardiology (though it looks fab!) is pretty big, esp for peds usage. does it even have a separate bell? at least with the cardio III you can take off the cover thing on the ped side to get a proper bell. i'd love to get one but it seems that the card III is more flexible/versatile. cardio III is also louder, but the master cardio isolates sounds *slightly* better.
    4) think about the cardio IISe too, it's lighter -- but the III has better acoustics. i have a one from before i was even born ;)
    5) ultimately auscultation is an art! as with computers and tech gadgets, the tool can get you only so far, the rest is user skill.
     
  16. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    I second this. Really only a handful of schools use them the first year, although most try to work it in in 2d year. Those that do may be able to arrange deals.
     
  17. BlinkyCat

    BlinkyCat Senior Member
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    I know i'm getting one for xmas, and apparently they come in different lengths...22 vs 27 inches? Does anyone know why there's a difference?
     
  18. gujuDoc

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    :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
     
  19. anon-y-mouse

    anon-y-mouse Senior Member
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    get the 27... want to smell the patient's BO / colostomy bag / other gross smells? -- you will if you get the 22. it can for sure make a difference :)
     
  20. gujuDoc

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    What's the difference between different levels of Litmann stethescopes??? What makes the more expensive one's better then the cheaper ones??? I always thought all stethescopes were the same.

    I got a friend of mine a $60 Littmann stethescope from the scrubs and medical supplies store in the mall near our school. I did this when he graduated as his graduation present. It was an idea I had from another friend who did this for someone before they both went off to medical school.

    But I never understood the difference between the various types of stethescopes.
     
  21. DropkickMurphy

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    I have a pediatric stethoscope, a Master Cardiology (which was a gift from my medical director), and a Littman lightweight. The lightweight is what I use when I run as an EMT and I used the Cardiology when I worked in the hospital.
     
  22. C.P. Jones

    C.P. Jones Catface Majigger
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    wwwwwwwwwwooooooooaaaaahhhhhhhhhh, they have electronic ones? i'm impressed....ding ding ding ding, we have a winner!
     
  23. BlinkyCat

    BlinkyCat Senior Member
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    Oh crap!... I'm getting the 22 one. Lovely! :(
     
  24. Captain Fantastic

    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    • Dual lumen vs. Single lumen. Dual lumen has a tube for each ear. Single Lumen has one tube that splits at your neck and then leads to each ear. The Dual lumen scopes have better sound quailty and are generally louder. All "cardiology" labeled scopes are dual lumen.
    • Chestpiece - the heavier ones block outside noise better than the light ones. Having dual heads, a diaphragm and a bell, allows you to hear both high frequency and low frequency sounds. Tunable diaphragms do the same thing (the frequence response is a function of how hard you press).
    • Tubing - thicker is better than thinner at reducing ambient noise. The tubes on Sprague stethoscopes sometimes rub together creating noise. Most of the high end cardiology scopes use "two lumens in one tube" to eliminate this problem.
     
  25. Captain Fantastic

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    I've had a few stethoscopes. My favorite to date is the Littmann Cardiology III. It's made it through the rain, mud, and blood of EMS work.

    I really wanted to keep my DRG Ti-Lite Cardiology, but it just didn't fit my ears as well as the Littmann. Too bad, 'cause the DRG has some awesome technology for an acoustic scope.
     
  26. MollyMalone

    MollyMalone I'm a Score Quadruplet
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    Don't worry, I've used both lengths and I don't think that the difference is all that appreciable. The shorter ones are better to stick in a pocket, the longer ones are nicer to hang around your neck if you like that sort of thing. I had always been taught that the shorter tubing has better acoustics but Littmann claims this is a myth.
     
  27. DrBowtie

    DrBowtie Final Countdown
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    I was under the impression that you should try a few out and choose what you think you can hear best with.

    Is this incorrect? Are they all pretty much the same?
     
  28. MollyMalone

    MollyMalone I'm a Score Quadruplet
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    There's definitely higher quality and lower quality. In my experience, for the most part you get what you pay for, although you reach a point of diminishing returns. Certain specialties that use auscultation more frequently appreciate the (sometimes marginally) better acoustics of the higher-end models. If you're a surgeon and you're only going to listen to the triple point, well, then I guess it doesn't matter as much. :laugh:
     
  29. C.P. Jones

    C.P. Jones Catface Majigger
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    the only time i've ever used one was in my anatomy lab....it hurt my ears....does one get used to this or is it just "the brand" we were using
     
  30. ShyRem

    ShyRem I need more coffee.
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    try different ear pieces. The hard plastic ones hurt my ears, too - I like the soft rubber ones.
     
  31. C.P. Jones

    C.P. Jones Catface Majigger
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    ohhhhh, yea they were hard plastic ones....soft rubber just sounds better....hey, that's kinda funny, sounds better, and we're talking about stethescopes

    yea, i'll look into that, but not til i get into a school :)
     
  32. letmein!please?

    letmein!please? Senior Member
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    I am training as an EMT over winter break, will I need a stethoscope when I start working on ambulances? I hope so. I've been drooling over the cardio III ever since I wandered into the cinical rotations forum :rolleyes:
     
  33. ShyRem

    ShyRem I need more coffee.
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    as an EMT-B, you will be listening for blood pressures and (perhaps) lung sounds. However, as a paramedic, I almost always listened to lung sounds myself - the exception being if I had a basic partner I had a great deal of trust and faith in, usually coming from a long-term working relationship. There should be stethoscopes on the ambulance. You won't need one there.

    Also, you might be snickered at as a brand-new EMT-basic with a cardio III -- as in a bit of overkill and waaaaaay too overenthusiastic. Just the kind of person that most experienced folk run from. Sad, but true. Most experienced folk will look at you and wonder why the h*ll you bought a cardio III when you don't have the slightest idea what to do with it. (Seriously, I'm not saying this to dissuade you from getting the cardio III, I just wanted to make you aware of what you might run into. But I do agree, the cardio III is sweet.) :)
     
  34. Non-TradTulsa

    Non-TradTulsa Senior Member - Resident
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    I have a Littmann Cardiology III that I really like. In response to the question of "why buy it now" - well, several of my premed friends and I bought ours early in the application cycle as good-luck pieces. When I get really depressed waiting to hear from my schools, I hang my scope around my neck - it helps. :laugh: Seriously, I've noticed at the hospital that, while a lot of attending physicians use the Cardiology III, many have switched to the Master Cardiology model. I was told, however, that "some schools" prefer for students to have a "classic" stethoscope with a bell (the Cardiology III pediatric side converts to a bell) and that they don't want students to use a Master Cardiology while in training. I have no idea if that's true, but that's what "they" told me so I bought my Cardiology III!
     
  35. MollyMalone

    MollyMalone I'm a Score Quadruplet
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    I recall hearing this too, though I have no idea if there is a lick of truth to it. I've actually been considering replacing my MC with a Cardiology III when the time comes for that among other reasons.
     
  36. DropkickMurphy

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    Some old school docs don't believe you can hear heart sounds as well with a single head scope, as you can with one that has a bell. Personally, I think it's BS, but that's my own opinion. Your mileage may vary.
     
  37. Non-TradTulsa

    Non-TradTulsa Senior Member - Resident
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    I think you're right - the Master Card is a terrific scope from what I've been told. But, the docs I know who have one don't do any pediatric work. I don't know, but I would guess that the head on the MC is so large that it would be more difficult to localize on infants - but that's only my pre-med semi-educated guess.
     
  38. Siggy

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    "Need" and "Suggest" is two different things. "Need?" Nope. There should be a $20 steth floating around in the ambulance with hard rubber ear pieces. I will suggest working a bit, then getting your own. Normally what you will be provided is the type of stethoscopes with two tubes which leads to problems hearing anything when the tubes are rubbing against each other.

    When/If you make the leap and buy your own for working as a Basic, I suggest going with nothing more then the intermediate levels ($40-50 range). On one hand it will make your job easier (which, as pointed out earlier, would only be lung sounds and BPs), make it so your ears don't hurt from the hard rubber (I love my gel seal eartips), and provide you with the piece of mind of having to wonder about the hygiene of the previous user. On the other hand, when the stethoscope grows legs and walks away it is going to hurt a lot less then if it was a $100 over kill steth.



    TIP: If you do buy your own, keep the box. I find the box helps because I can put the steth back in the box, throw the box in my trunk, and not have to worry about it till my next shift.
     

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