“You’d think someone who’d been to medical school would be able to hear through a stethoscope that somebody was empty inside”- Jodi Picoult
Ever been to the doctor or never been to the doctor, the stethoscope is something which most of us would have already seen and aware of it. It would be interesting to have a look at the history of the stethoscope. Invented in 1816, by a physician named Rene Laennec (based out of France), a stethoscope was brought into this world. The name ‘stethoscope’ is coined from two Greek words, ‘stethos’ which means chest and ‘scope’ which means to view or see. Later on, the first stethoscope was discovered by George P. Camman from New York. The stethoscope is an instrument which is used by doctors, nurses and medical practitioners to listen to the body sounds especially from heart and lungs. Sometimes it is also used to listen to the blood flow and the heartbeat of fetuses of pregnant women. Since it was not possible that you could listen to these sounds well, that is why a stethoscope was invented.
Stethoscopes might seem to be just an instrument but in actual, they are a way to build a connection with the patient. A stethoscope allows the doctor or nurse to give permission to touch a patient without physically touching them. It develops to connect and rapport between the patient and the doctor.
To Look Forward These are The Best Stethoscopes For Doctors
- 3M Littmann Master Cardiology
- 3M Littmann Classic
- 3M Littmann Lightweight II S.E.
- 3M Littmann Cardiology
- 3M Littmann Master Classic
From the above-mentioned list, you could see that 3M is common among all these stethoscopes. Let us understand what 3M Littman is. In the medical field, 3M is considered as one of the most recognized stethoscopes in this profession because it offers the audibility of high-frequency sounds. ‘To how to listen with stethoscope’ is termed as auscultation. It is not something a layman can do, doctors and nurses learn it over the period of time. With the help of auscultation through a stethoscope, they are able to listen to sounds of heart, lungs, and bowel as well which helps them to assess the patient’s current health condition.
It Would be Quite Informative to Know The Points to Ponder Before Auscultation
- Make sure that the room where auscultation is being performed is calm and quiet. The room should have proper lightings as well
- The patient’s back should be disrobed so that there is no disturbance from the clothing and as a doctor or a nurse you can examine the patients by putting the stethoscope directly on the chest or back.
- You need to be aware of the fact that you will probably get to hear different kinds of sounds, especially the abnormal ones in different positions of the patient. It must be left lateral recumbent positions.
Keeping in mind the above it will be easier for you to understand how to use a stethoscope to listen to the lungs. When we think of stethoscopes, they function visibly more than what we know about it. They are not just meant for putting the things on your ears and listen to the sounds. They are meant for much more. Someone who is new to the medical profession must get hands-on experience with the stethoscope. To perform the auscultation, we need to be aware of its parts and how it works. The most important parts of the stethoscope are diaphragm and bell. The diaphragm is the larger part and the bell is a smaller one. The diaphragm is a sealer membrane, which is on the flatter side of the chest piece and the bell has a concave piece. When you switch between these, you hear a click sound. The diaphragm makes a vibrating sound. An amazing feature of the stethoscope is that it can amplify sounds too. Did you ever think that how to use a stethoscope on yourself? These are the steps you can follow to use a stethoscope on yourself
Find a quiet area where you can sit
Make sure that your chest is bare and you place the diaphragm of the stethoscope on your chest.
Listen to your heartbeat Now the main thing is to observe that if you find any kind of irregularities in the heartbeat. Count how many times your heart beats per minute. At a larger note, with the help of stethoscope, you can measure blood pressure, assess lung and heart sounds, assess bowel sounds, and measure the span of your liver. If you observe that there is an unusual sound in your heartbeats, you need to check with your physician as soon as possible.