Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Buying Your First Stethoscope

Stethoscopes come in a variety of price ranges and brand names.  You first need to decide what you're going to be listening to, cardiac or lung sounds?  Or both.  If your're a nurse or nursing student, you're going to listen to both...a lot!!  If you're short on cash as a nursing student, purchasing a less expensive model will get you through school just fine.  However, if you can, purchase a good stethoscope as you will use this same one for many years in your career.  In my 35+ years of nursing, I had a total of 3 stethscopes in all.  The important thing is don't lose it.  Don't ever leave it at the nurses station or in a patient's room, I guarantee you, it will walk away in someone's hand.  Some medical student will invariably borrow it and leave the unit...without realizing it's around his/her neck and never remember where it came from.  Gone.  Get in the habit as a student nurse to always wear it around your neck.  Always.  Even to the cafeteria.  You will always know where it is and soon it will become a part of you during your entire shift.  Here is a great video on choosing a stethoscope:


Points to remember: 

Stethscope should have soft, comfortable ear tips
Avoid plastic bells, these are disposable and you can't hear well with them. 


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