1. I have just been accepted to nursing school for the fall and was wondering about the best stethoscope to get. I want one that is loud because even though I have no issues with hearing normally, the few times I have listened through one, I had a hard time hearing.
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    Joined: Apr '12; Posts: 142; Likes: 30


  3. by   hodgieRN
    For school, I recommend not getting an expense scope because you will either lose it or someone will take it. Doctors and nurses are very busy and many times, they don't look at the scope and just throw it in their jacket. It's innocent though (mostly anyway). You have to make it a habit to always have it around your neck and if someone borrows it, you watch them use it and immediately take it back.

    I think the littman classic is around $40-$60 (something like that). It works well. You could even buy the scope that they sell for $30 at the school store.

    School will teach you how to listen and what to listen for. You have to have the ear buds pointing forward b/c that's the normal anatomy of the ear canal. Many times, you think that you can't hear anything, but it's because you don't know what you are listening to. Also, you have to learn exactly where to listen. The expensive scopes that amplify sounds are overkill for new students.

    Go with a cheap scope at first. Learn what to listen for and then you can work your way up. I say don't spend anything over $50. Chances are the scope will be gone in the 1st or 2nd semester. There's always a student who forgets their scope and they have to borrow yours. That's another big reason scopes get lost. The cheap scopes are actually pretty good. Don't buy a pediatric scope for your peds rotation. The bell of your scope will work just fine. I had a $30 scope in school and student with the $400 scope didn't pick out anything more than me.
  4. by   Guy in Babyland
    A dual bell Littman would be my choice. Here is a chart that might help: Littmann Stethoscope Comparison |
  5. by   akulahawkRN
    I would have to second that suggestion of not buying a stethoscope that's more expensive than about $50 at first. You really normally won't need the extra fidelity that you can get from the more expensive models until you really learn what to listen for. I've been using them for a long time and for the "basic" stuff you do with a stethoscope, I guarantee you that I can hear what I need to with a $12 cheap model or with a $400+ electronic model... or any model in between. I own a Cardiology III. I also have a Lightweight. Both are around 10 years old. They work just fine for what I use them for.

    Then again, my ears are trained. I wouldn't have learned any better or faster with a more expensive model.
  6. by   MsKris_CarolinaGirl
    I have an MDF I think I may have spent $60 on it has a lifetime warranty for its parts and its comparable to a littman it was well worth the money and I love it
  7. by   i♥words
    I start in the fall as well. The nursing program I'm going to recommended a Littmann Classic II S.E. Stethoscope. I've been looking for a place online to buy and get engraving done, and so far Medisave is the cheapest I've found. Engraving is free, and this weekend they have a 10% off coupon if you like their Facebook page. No, I'm not at all connected with the site, I'm just looking for the best price.
  8. by   Racer15
    I was a vet tech before I was a nurse, and I used the Littmann Classic II, both as a vet tech, and as a nursing student/new nurse. I would not go the cheap route. If my stethoscope isn't in my ears, it is around my neck. I never allow it out of my sight, and in six years, I have never lost it. I don't see the point in cheapie scopes, I find them to be a waste of money as I cannot hear very well with them. To each their own.
  9. by   ko115
    I currently own a Littmann Classic II S.E, and I am upgrading to a Cardiology III. I am in my third semester, but recently had the opportunity to listen through the Cardiology III and what a difference! I hear just fine with the Classic, but I hear with less interference with the Cardiology III. Try going into a medical store and testing different models out before you make the purchase to see which one you hear better with. has great prices for scopes as well. Good luck