Eko Core Electronic Stethoscope
I was recently afforded the opportunity to use an Eko Core electronic stethoscope. Here are my thoughts....
I'm currently an APRN in a large nephrology practice. I see anywhere from 20-70 patients per day for focused exams. About 50% of the time, I'm listening to lung/heart sounds. I also listen to dialysis accesses. So a great stethoscope is a must. I want to add that I'm listening to these patients while they are on dialysis and many dialyze via a perm-cath making lung/heart sound assessments somewhat difficult due to machine noise as well as perm-cath extraneous noise.
This Eko Core stethoscope was developed in 2015, and operates as both an electronic as well as analog steth. It reduces ambient noise and in the electronic mode has 7 levels of volume control, making it easy to further amplify sound. The difference in this electronic stethoscope and some others is that it operates in both electronic and analog mode. So, if the battery charge is low, this is still a fully functioning stethoscope. In addition, there is the option of just purchasing the electronic component by itself allowing you to customize your own stethoscope, making it electronic. CORE delivers loud, clear heart and lung sounds and simple software support when you need it. Or, toggle it off to return to the acoustic sound you already know.
The Eko Core stethoscope also features a secure app that allows for transmitting heart or lung sounds via bluetooth. The Bluetooth-connected mobile app, available on the Apple App Store as well as Google Play allows clinicians to view a heart sound waveform, save heart sounds directly to a patient's electronic health record and securely collaborate with a cardiologist for a second opinion. The app is HIPAA compliant. It is:
- Compatible on Apple devices with iOS 6 and above.
- Compatible with most Samsung, Google, and other Android devices 5 and above.
- Compatible with most PCs with Windows 7 and above.
The stethoscope arrives in a sturdy box and contains the fully assembled stethoscope, with detachable pediatric bell, the USB charging cord as well as a wall plug in. The battery in the electronic component will last 9 hours under continuous use. Normal clinicians usually charge the battery every 21 days or so. It is ready to go right out of the box.
Eko products are designed for every clinician. With industry-leading audio amplification and waveform visualization, hard-of-hearing clinicians can auscultate with confidence. Eko has worked with top manufacturers to install audio drivers designed specifically for hearing support. These drivers provide outstanding sound quality, 40 or 60x audio amplification, and filtering to reduce ambient noise.
I used the Eko Core stethoscope for approximately 125 patient assessments. The patients were all on dialysis when assessed and many had murmurs and/or adventitious sounds. It was very easy to listen to the patients and identify murmurs and/or other issues. I cleaned it with alcohol pads between patients just as the manufacturer recommended.
One of the uses of the Eko Core is telemedicine. If you opt for the electronic component only, the box comes with multiple sizes of tubing as well as the charging cord and detailed instructions.
The Eko stethoscope sells for $299. However, you can also purchase the electronic part separately to adapt your own stethoscope for $199.
For a limited time, Eko is offering allnurses members 30% discount. Use this link to get your discount.
This Eko Core stethoscope makes a great Christmas present.
The device reviewed in this video was provided by the manufacturer for review.
Last edit by Joe V on Jan 27, '18
Nov 23, '17That would have been amazing to have in school! Though it probably wouldn't have been beneficial to my learning.Nov 23, '17Thanks - its a pretty cool device. For me, it improved my ability to catch adventitious lung sounds and murmurs. This is especially important in some of our more vulnerable populations: peds and geriatrics and those in the ICUs.Nov 23, '17Yes Thinklabs IS great.
However, with a 30% discount now this is soooo much more affordable.Dec 3, '17I would also say there are several posts in nurses with disabilities forum about amplified stethoscopes. I have this EKO core and the Thinklabs one. The core is great if you already have a nice stethoscope that you like. the passthrough acoustic is nice if the battery dies. It's relatively lightweight and can still be worn around the neck if needed. The software for recording and connecting the Core to your smartphone is clunky and often does not connect well. My pet peeve with it is that it defaults to the middle volume level every time it is turned on, no matter what the previous volume setting was. Great for someone with normal or mild/moderate hearing loss. For significant hearing loss, the Thinklabs One is far superior. This is my go to stethoscope, the Core is my backup. EKO are coming out with the DUO sometime this month, this is a stethoscope and EKG in one device. The advantage is you can use the DUO with headphones plugged in like the Thinklabs. That one is supposed to ship this month for pre-orders.Dec 3, '17Southpaw, have you found a combo of BT transmitter and wireless headphones/earbuds that works well with the ThinkLabs?
I've tried a couple of transmitters and both a mini Jawbone speaker and Bose Hearphones but it's not even marginal.
If I could reliably get it to work with the Hearphones, it would be beyond fantastic (as a $1,000 stethoscope should be :-}) and great option in lieu of my BTE hearing aids.
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