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Stethoscopes are used to auscultate the chest or belly or to measure blood pressure using a shygmomanometer with cuff. They are amongst the most important diagnostic tools in medical practices and hospitals.
The selection of stethoscopes includes diverse models in different colours and sizes for adults, as well as stethoscopes for children or babys. Read on here at the end of this page.
The Stethoscope - An Important Diagnostic Instrument
A professional auscultation of children and adults can detect diseases and inflammations early and significantly alter the course of illness. Especially the important organs like the heart and lungs, which are otherwise difficult to examine, can be checked for abnormalities using stethoscopes. Therefore, stethoscopes are commonly used in cardiology.
This diagnostic instrument can also play a crucial role in emergency medical services. Paramedics can check at the scene whether vital organs have been damaged by the accident and act accordingly.
Stethoscopes are often used in conjunction with a reflex hammer. The stethoscope is used to examine the sound produced by tapping. This helps identify potential cavities.
A conventional stethoscope consists of four components:
The Chest Piece
The chest piece, also called the head or bell, is the central component of the stethoscope and contains a membrane inside that picks up the acoustic waves and is set into vibration. It is placed on the area that is to be examined on the patient.
The membrane inside the chest piece receives the acoustic signals and generates its own signal, which is then transmitted to the earpieces through the tubing. These vibrations are perceived as sounds. To ensure that the signal reaches the doctor without distortion, the ear tips, known as earpieces, provide the necessary sealing of the ear.
High-quality stethoscopes can be identified by a chest piece with high mass, as the chest piece should remain stationary compared to the vibrating body. The high mass creates high inertia, reducing the vibrations of the chest piece. The larger side of the membrane is typically used for adult patients.
A conventional stethoscope tubing has a length between 65 and 70 cm. It should not be longer and should be as rigid as possible to ensure optimal sound transmission. There are three different types of stethoscope tubing:
- The single-tube stethoscope (Y-shape) is a single-lumen tubing and the most commonly used type. Both ears are exposed to the sounds from the same tubing.
- Dual-tube stethoscopes are the classic models with two tubes, known as dual-lumen tubing. The separate pathways to the ears allow for a more differentiated perception of sounds.
- The dual-lumen tubing is the modern implementation of the dual-tube design. It consists of a single tube that is divided by a partition in the middle. This allows the ears to be exposed to different channels that are combined within a single tube.
Earpieces and Ear Tips
The earpieces consist of two tubes with tension springs and ear tips. The earpieces of a stethoscope are connected at the bases by a spring frame. To ensure a good fit in your ear canals, the earpieces are aligned at an ergonomic angle. The purpose of the ear tips is to provide a soundproof seal in the ear canal for effective reduction of ambient noise. The ear tips are made of a soft material to allow optimal adaptation to the shape of the ear.
Ear tips from Medicalcorner24® offer you excellent acoustic sealing while providing a comfortable wearing experience. Luxamed ear tips from our online shop are available in soft and hard variants.
Order high-quality stethoscopes and practical accessories conveniently online now!
What Are the Different Types of Stethoscopes?
Despite their uniform functionality, there are various types of stethoscopes suitable for different applications. There are acoustic and electronic stethoscopes, stethoscopes with single and dual tubing, as well as stethoscopes in various sizes for pediatric and infant care, for example.
The Flat-Head Stethoscope
The simplest variant is the flat-head stethoscope. It has a membrane on one side of the chest piece, while the other side is usually ergonomically shaped for a comfortable grip.
Due to its flat design, the chest piece can easily be slid under the patient during examinations. Flat-head stethoscopes are also particularly suitable for general examinations or blood pressure measurements in hospitals and healthcare settings.
The Dual-Head Stethoscope with Bell and Diaphragm
The dual-head stethoscope was originally invented by the American cardiologist Dr. David Littmann. The stethoscope consists of a dual-head chest piece with a bell on one side and a diaphragm on the other side.
The diaphragm is well-suited for listening to high frequencies, while the bell is more suitable for low frequencies that are commonly present in cardiology. Occasionally, the dual-head stethoscope is also equipped with two differently-sized diaphragms and omits the bell. The smaller diaphragm is often used for examinations on the neck or as a pediatric stethoscope.
Pediatric Stethoscopes - Stethoscopes for Children and Infants
Special pediatric stethoscopes or infant stethoscopes are used for examining children. Stethoscopes used in pediatrics are reduced in size and adapted to the proportions of small patients.
With stethoscopes featuring a dual-head and dual-tube design, auscultation of both children and adults can be performed using the same stethoscope.
Cardiology Stethoscopes and Rappaport Stethoscopes
In cardiology, stethoscopes with highly sensitive detection of high and low-frequency sounds are required. Another special form of the acoustic stethoscope is the Rappaport stethoscope. It features a short double tube instead of a Y-shaped single tube and a dual-head chest piece. The Rappaport stethoscope is equipped with a switchable chest piece. The double tube ensures optimal sound conduction for differentiated auscultation.
Electronic stethoscopes amplify sound and thereby facilitate the auscultation of particularly faint body sounds as well as monitoring patients in a noisy environment - for example, in the emergency room of a hospital.
Whether it's cardiology, pulmonology, or general medicine - in our online shop, you will find the right stethoscope for your application. Buy stethoscopes online now!
Buy Stethoscopes and Other Medical Products at Medicalcorner24® at Affordable Prices
In our Medicalcorner24® online shop, we offer classic acoustic stethoscopes with a dual-head design. The dual-head stethoscopes for adults, children, and infants have a stainless steel chest piece for disposable diaphragm systems and provide optimal sound transmission. Additionally, our Diagnostics category offers a wide selection of other measuring and testing devices, such as: