Best Stethoscope?


I have been working as a tech on a postpartum unit for almost a year and I have finally graduated nursing school and passed my boards! I start on the unit on Monday and I am trying to decide what the best stethoscope would be! I have a Littmann Classic II and I love it but it has my maiden name and I would love to get a new one! I am trying to decide if I just want to get a neonatal scope from Littmann and just use my Classic II for the mommas or if I should splurge and get a Cardiology III because it has both the peds head and the adult head. Anyone have any advice? It would be nice not to have to carry two stethoscopes to work but I am not sure if I can justify buying a Cardiology stethoscope!

klone, MSN, RN

14,497 Posts

Specializes in OB-Gyn/Primary Care/Ambulatory Leadership. Has 17 years experience.

I would get a Littman peds stethoscope. You can use it for both moms and newborns. I would not spend the money on a cardiology one, you don't need to diagnose cardiac defects. Basically, you just need to be able to hear rate, rhythm, if there's a murmur, and if there are bowel sounds and lung sounds.


114 Posts

I'm doing my maternity clinical rotation right now, and I use the infant stethoscope on both moms and babies, with no problem!


32 Posts

Specializes in postpartum and gynecology. Has 5 years experience.

I've worked postpartum for 10 years and recently upgraded to a cardio III. While I agree with Klone that you are not diagnosing defects, the cardio III is great because I don't have to use two stethoscopes. I hated using the pede stethoscope for the mom. I would say about 10-12 of our staff bought the cardio III, and everyone loves it. It is a heavier stethoscope though, so just be aware of that. I like that it has a higher acoustic rating as we get a lot of c/s, gyne surgeries and recently medical off services. All in all I recommend it highly!!

Specializes in Emergency Department. Has 8 years experience.

While I can't comment on it's applicability to the specific use, I have had some very good experiences with my Littman Cardiology III. One of the best things about it is that it's got both adult and pediatric heads and the audio fidelity is quite good. I have used mine for the better part of 10 years and it's still going strong. Quite simply, if I can't hear it with my steth, chances are pretty good that you'd have to use a doppler or a highly amplified electronic device.