Another question for you NICU nurses

  1. I was wondering what you guys do about stethoscopes in NICU. I am just starting as a new grad and thinking I probably need to look into buying one. Does your unit have a stethescope designated for each baby or do you use your own when doing assessments?
    I REALLY DO NOT want to have to shell out the money for one unless absolutely necessary....go those student loans to pay back, you know!!
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  2. 24 Comments

  3. by   prmenrs
    We use our own. There are neonatal stethoscopes for <$20. They do everything the Littman does IMHO. Owners of Littmans will no doubt disagree. Littman neonatal are still nowhere near the "master cardiology" range--probably in the $50-$80 area, although I haven't priced them recently. I would consider them at a future date, if you want to get a GOOD 'scope.

    Do not get a Sprague type. Again my opinion, but I don't like stuff around my neck, esp. as heavy as that stethoscope is. Do invest in some sort of scope cover--if you hang it around your neck, the cover will prevent skin oil from getting into the plastic and permanently bending it.

    Good Luck! Be sure and get a Merenstein and Gardner!
  4. by   Heather333
    Already bought it! Got it in the mail yesterday.

    Heather
  5. by   prmenrs
    Now all you need is a highlighter in your favorite color!
  6. by   Heather333
    PURPLE PURPLE PURPLE!
  7. by   Brownbetty
    I am going to be starting in the NICU (new grad) in August. In our NICU each baby has their own stethescope. I understand that this is to cut down on infectons etc. However, these stethescopes are so cheap and hurt my ears (hard plastic) I miss my Littmann that sits at home. And it is purple too!!!
  8. by   prmenrs
    I did Infection Control for over 7 years. I have NEVER, EVER seen a documented case of an infection passed from one pt to another via a stethescope. Hands, probably, NEVER a stethescope.

    It can be cleaned w/whatever topical disinfectant they use, the chestpiece can be cleaned with an alcohol swab between pts easily.

    It makes me absolutely crazy when nurses get so obsessed with inanimate objects--and forget what's REALLY important. HANDWASHING.

    Invasive devices are another story.

    If they want to have each baby to have their own scope, they could invest <$20 per kid, issue them when the kids are born, and clean them between pts-like the beds.

    Sorry--didn't mean to go off on this--
  9. by   Brownbetty
    I am with you prmenrs. I wish I could use my Littmann so bad. I worry about the ear wax and gunk I have to feverishly clean off of the stethescope before I can assess the babies. It is so gross!!!:imbar Everyone uses that stethescope, the docs, nps other nurses, respiratory etc. I don't want to think about it. :imbar
  10. by   Brownbetty
    ....when I think about it, if I brought a expensive stethescope to work it would probably mysteriously walk away.
  11. by   nurseiam
    In our NICU each baby has its own. If your worried about other peoples ear gunk wipe it with an alcohol swab before you use it!
  12. by   Brownbetty
    Well...that is exactly what I do but it is still gross.
  13. by   Mimi2RN
    Our babies have their own stethoscopes, but they grow legs and disappear-and when you need one to go to a delivery, an extra is hard to find. I finally bought my own Littman, clean it with disinfectant or alcohol, and keep it with me. I'd love to search doctor's offices and cars for all our missing stethoscopes! We do check L&D, postpartum and peds occasionally.
  14. by   lily0004us
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    Last edit by lily0004us on Nov 21, '02

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