The stethoscope is an instrument that is part of the daily life of health professionals from different specialties, such as doctors, nurses, and physiotherapists, among others. There are several stethoscope models and values, so we'll help you choose the one that best suits your needs.
Before talking about the models themselves, it is important to put some points on the scale before making your purchase. One of these points concerns your experience using stethoscopes. In this article we will focus on models that facilitate the daily life of the most experienced professionals, adding the highest quality stethoscopes on the market to our list.
If you're still a student, you have two reasons to opt for a simpler model. The first one is for you to get used to the instrument. A simpler stethoscope may have a lower acoustic capacity due to its quality, which makes the person using it has more attention at the time of use. The second reason is the fact that a simpler model does not require a high amount of investment, therefore over time you can upgrade and acquire a more robust model.
Another interesting point to note is choosing a model that is suitable for your specialty and the profile of patients you will serve using this instrument. For example, if your services are intended for children and adults, you can purchase the dual-head model, where on one side there is the larger earpiece that can be used in adults, and on the other side, the smaller head for pediatric care. Otherwise, you can buy the one that best suits your needs.
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The most commonly used stethoscopes today are acoustic, and they have great sound quality. However, you can also opt for electronic models, which can amplify the bass sound, thus eliminating any noise that may interfere when evaluating the patient. Another differential of electronic stethoscopes is that some of them allow the health professional to record the auscultation to listen at another time, which allows you to ask questions and make comparisons with other exams.
In terms of durability, it is important to pay attention to the material used in the instrument, such as its rods. Some stethoscopes have shafts made of stainless steel, which is a great option as it is corrosion-resistant because it has chromium in its composition, which inhibits rust. Another alternative is stethoscopes with aerospace aluminum rods, which, in addition to their strength, have the advantage of weight: they are super light.
The shape of the rods must also be evaluated at the time of purchase. Some models have a not-so anatomical shape, being straighter in the region that is in the ear. This can be a problem because this format ends up not having a good fixation. In this case, the ideal is to opt for rods that have a good curvature, as this format usually has a better adaptation.
The ear olives also deserve attention, after all, they will be responsible for fixing the rods in your ear and will remain in direct contact with this part of your body. The ear olives can be made of different materials: plastic, rubber, silicone, and even latex. Plastic ear tips usually accompany the simplest stethoscope models, and compared to the others, they tend to be less comfortable. On the other hand, silicone ear tips are usually the most suitable, because, in addition to being more comfortable, They are also made of an anti-allergenic material.
Top brands and models
There are many different brands and models of a stethoscope and different prices. among the best brands on the market are: Littmann, friCARE, Onrom, among others.
Littmann is considered the best stethoscope brand and has different lines, namely Cardiology, Classic, and Lightweight. Many of its differentials include very particular characteristics, such as high acoustic sensitivity, adjustable diaphragms, good fit with soft-sealing ear tips, adjustable earpiece, state-of-the-art tubes, precision headphones, and lightweight. Check out Littmann's options below along with their pros and cons.
- 3M™ Littmann® CORE Digital Stethoscope: In addition to the high-tech features, this model can effectively amplify sounds and let you save them for future reference. The model has several ear accessories in different sizes, adapting to each user. As it is a digital device, its battery needs to be recharged constantly, but it is still possible to use it in analog mode.
- Littmann Model 3200 Electronic: with high durability and very robustness, this model has a backlit LCD where it is possible to adjust the volume and frequency of the stethoscopes, as well as see your patient's heart rate. One of its differentials is the high technology of ambient noise reduction, having the ability to reduce them by up to 85%. Despite having very intuitive settings, it may seem confusing to some users.
- 3M Littmann Master Cardiology: ideal for cardiologists and with one of the best acoustics on the market, this model has a tunable diaphragm, allowing users a wide range of frequencies, giving them the option of listening to low to high-frequency sounds. With an ergonomic headset and 7-year warranty, its bulky design and high price can be considered its only downsides.
- 3M Littmann Classic III: with a two-sided earpiece (adult and pediatric use) and both tunable, the model has a new generation binaural tube that has greater durability as it is resistant to skin oil and alcohol. It has stainless steel temples that are more malleable, helping to complement the normal anatomy of the ear canal. And above all, the main thing: high acoustic sensitivity for exceptional performance in the clinical evaluation of healthcare professionals.
- 3M Littmann Lightweight II S.E.: This model provides reliable acoustic performance for taking blood pressure readings and performing limited physical assessments of adult patients, therefore it is very suitable for vital data verification and screening services. Weighing just 118 grams, this is the lightest Littmann model on the market. In addition, it is also indicated for veterinary use and offers the basic features already known from the brand: a tunable diaphragm, a two-sided chest piece, and adjustable temples.
It is worth remembering that prices vary not only from brand to brand but also according to the place where you will buy, and for this reason, we prefer not to include such information in the article. On the internet, it is possible to compare the values of several sites, and if any of them are not available on national store websites, you will be able to import them through the Amazon store.
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