I know Littman gets rave reviews but......... - page 3

does anyone care to recommend a less costly alternative to the Littman stethoscope? Every thread I can find on stethoscopes seems to repeatedly mention Littman (which should tell me something!) but... Read More

  1. by   jmgrn65
    Littman's have a wide variety of stethoscopes price ranges from about 40 dollars to a few hundred dollars. I have used them for years and I think the quality for the less expensive one is pretty good.
  2. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from Animaniacs
    I dont know, what do you folks saY? should i get a new stethoscope. I want to be raelly accurate in my assessments. I have put down clear breath sounds before, and when the nurse checked, she said, it was abnormal. Anyways, I'ld like your suggestions.
    If you cannot hear very well with your current steth, then get a new one.

    However, more expensive ones are not necessarily better. You do not need to spend $100 to $200 when there are excellent steths that can be bought for $25 to $50. If a cheap steth can clearly pick up respirations and heart sounds, then it is a great deal.

    Accuracy with your assessments will come with time and experience, and not the quality of your stethoscope.
  3. by   NEC1970
    Quote from NurseStace
    Hi,

    I'm not in school anymore, but i've been through my share of stethascopes, I've had spragues, and littmans, the one I just bought, was from DRG... I spent abour $80 for it, but I can hear a fly phart in the next room. comes with diaphram covers that are antimicrobial, and can be washed and autoclaved. was worth the investment.
    which DRG? i had a DRG that was recently misplaced or stolen. noone has seen it for 3 weeks in either pt's room i had. anyhow, i couldn't always hear very well and it was over $100 item.
  4. by   SuesquatchRN
    www.steeles.com is great and very inexpensive and, unlike AllHeart, actually has the stuff in stock and doesn't take your money and then wait to ship for two months.
  5. by   Aedana
    Quote from ashse
    does anyone care to recommend a less costly alternative to the Littman stethoscope? Every thread I can find on stethoscopes seems to repeatedly mention Littman (which should tell me something!) but I'm not sure I'm willing to spend that kind of money on my first. I'd be curious to know what other types are being used by fellow students out there.
    I have a Littman Classic SE II. Absolutely wonderful scope. I bought a light colored one and wrote my name on it in sharpie very carefully on the curved plastic by the earpieces (it's REAL obvious it's mine). I also know students who absolutely love the Ultrascope (there is another model out there made by the same people that is not as expensive, but I can't think of what it's called...but I know students who love it too!).

    My advice to you is to see if you can find a local medical supply/scrub shop that might let you browse and possibly 'try before you buy'. Also, another thing you need to know are the demands of your program (do you need to have the traditional dual sided bell/diaphragm or would your teachers mind a single side Ultrascope?).

    I also have one of the inexpensive Prestige scopes (12-15 dollars) and had a hard time taking even a BP unless I used one of the school's Littmans. I thought it was just a problem with a bad scope until my skills instructor pointed out that the tubing was way longer than the max length recommended, so the extra length muffles the sound. I pulled the stethoscope head off of the tubing and trimmed it down to the right length very carefully with scissors. After putting it back together, I can hear out of the cheap scope really well to do BPs and heart/lung sounds just fine (it's in my trunk as a backup now). Just an idea for what to do with your old scope so you don't feel like you're wasting money.

    Hope this helps!

    -- Aedana

    P.S. Ok, I just found the less expensive version of the Ultrascope, it's called the Maxiscope. Here's a link to it on AllHeart.

    http://www.allheart.com/utm.html
    Last edit by Aedana on Mar 27, '06
  6. by   TheCommuter
    In early February I purchased a Nurse-Mates stethoscope at a local uniform store for $15.99 and it works so wonderfully for me. I can hear quite well with it.
  7. by   RNsRWe
    I have a twist on this question: I bought a Prestige/Sprague one for $15.99 that worked just fine, great even, for 1.5 years. I replaced it with a Littman Lightweight SE a few months back because, well, it was lighter! The Sprague had dual tubing and a heavy diaphragm that tended to twist apart and it was just plain heavy on the neck.

    Anyway, I spent about $55 on this one, and while it IS light to wear, I also can't hear nearly as well! I wondered if I was losing my mind, and then realized that not all Littmans are created equal or something like that. SOOO....here I am, weeks away from graduation, and I want a good stethoscope that I don't have to wonder about that also isn't annoying to wear.

    I know I can buy Littmans cheap, I did that, but did anyone here buy one of the more expensive ones and wish they hadn't? At this point I have two steths, neither of which I want to wear to work :uhoh21:

    I don't mind spending the cash if it makes a difference, but don't want to waste money either....suggestions?
  8. by   RN_N_DA_MAKN
    Quote from RNs2BRwe
    I have a twist on this question: I bought a Prestige/Sprague one for $15.99 that worked just fine, great even, for 1.5 years. I replaced it with a Littman Lightweight SE a few months back because, well, it was lighter! The Sprague had dual tubing and a heavy diaphragm that tended to twist apart and it was just plain heavy on the neck.

    Anyway, I spent about $55 on this one, and while it IS light to wear, I also can't hear nearly as well! I wondered if I was losing my mind, and then realized that not all Littmans are created equal or something like that. SOOO....here I am, weeks away from graduation, and I want a good stethoscope that I don't have to wonder about that also isn't annoying to wear.

    I know I can buy Littmans cheap, I did that, but did anyone here buy one of the more expensive ones and wish they hadn't? At this point I have two steths, neither of which I want to wear to work :uhoh21:

    I don't mind spending the cash if it makes a difference, but don't want to waste money either....suggestions?
    I've been using a Littmann Master Classic II since beginning nursing school, and I love it. I have no problem taking BP or identifying abnormal lung, heart, or bowel sounds. It costs around $80 and IMO it was money very well spent.

    Once I had to borrow a classmates sprague during clinical and I swear I could have just placed my ear against the pt chest for all the sounds I heard
  9. by   HHW2006
    There are many students in my class who have Lane stethoscopes. They are comparable to Littman, at least for a nursing student. They run about $30.
  10. by   anbreen
    I've been lurking some medical students/physicians l/s on this subject.

    According to what I've read, Littlman is a mvery good scope, but others are just as good, if not better. Littman is the best MARKETED scope. Opinions varied widely, and covered almost the full range of available scopes. There was one in particular....PRB? Soemthing like that, whose accoustics are designed by Bose.

    Some of the l/s cited a study that found that in actual performance, high-end scopes were very comparable for cardiology purposes. Little difference was found. EXCEPT for one superior scope-- the Littman Cardiology II. That scope is not longer made.

    So....if I were you, I'd go to a medical suppliesm store and try a few out. When you find one that you like....buy it on eBay.
  11. by   MissJoRN
    :yeahthat: I do wonder why they stopped making the cardio II, it is a great scope (I like to have a bell)... although mine never leaves the house since I don't have patients big enough for it. I do see the merit in the cardio 3 with adult and pedi heads... even in an exclusive adult population sometimes the adult diaphragm is too big to get perfect contact with the patient, on the other hand I've never seen a case where the pedi haed ws too small... another reason my adult steth has sat at home for years!

    When I decided to get the pedi scope I just couldn't make my self pay $80 for a Littmann, it just made me cringe. Sorry, it is a great scope but maybe it's because i remember when they weren't that expensive. A pp poster mentioned the ear pieces changing in 1994... 2 other things changed that year- 1-ER became a hit show 2-the signature diaphragm I refuse to pay extra for a stethoscope just because it's a guest star on TV I ended up buying the ADC "Adscope" for half the price and just bought a new one since mine finally grew legs and walked out of a homecare clients house. I love the ADC, I think it's every bit as good as most of the Littmanns I've borrowed and much better than an older Littmann I used to own. (it's comperable to the LM peds which is just a scaled down Classic) I'm always surprised that I don't see more of them. They make several models, the adult models come in a great range of colours, too

    I've always wanted to try the DRG (the bose steth). The eartips sound like heaven, too! I like the LM/ ADC style, but the others really hurt my ears.
    Last edit by MissJoRN on Apr 5, '06
  12. by   FlipFlopGrl
    allheart.com has the littman classic ii se onsale right now for $60.99. my school requires this one and i'm so glad i got it onsale today! you might want to check it out...
  13. by   j_tay1981
    I have a Littmann Classic S.E. II and I feel I can hear just as well out of my Prestiges (a Clinical I and a Sprague). I like the Littmann, but as of right now I do not feel as though it were worth the price I paid for it.

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