How to Choose the Right Stethoscopes for Nurses

A lot of students and simple people, who are not even into medicine have issues when buying any kind of medical devices. A stethoscope as the most basic and important piece of medical equipment arise a lot of questions. There are two groups of customers. One group considers that all stethoscopes are the same while another group believes that the best stethoscopes are ones, which the doctors have. So, who is right?


Today we’re going to find out is there any difference between the stethoscopes; which one is the best stethoscope for nurses and which one is better for average customers.

So, let’s get started.

How to Pick a Good Stethoscope

The truth is that there are different types of stethoscopes in medicine. They differ in design, style, brand, etc.

Talking about brands, we can point out a few, which are specifically made for nursing students and professional nurses. They are Littmann, Sprague, and Prestige.

When you’re looking for a good stethoscope, pay attention to the quality of the tubing, the quality of its head (it must be heavy), and the little piece of plastic on the stethoscope head particularly.


There are several types of a stethoscope:

  • Dual Head – a bell and a diaphragm. Such models are created to hear low and high sounds on different sides of the equipment. This type is better for beginners who only start learning medicine. So, this model is the best variant for nursing students.
  • Single Head – diaphragm without bell area. This type is popular in cardiology particularly because it provides clearer sounds when monitoring heart sounds.
  • Single tubing. The most popular model among students, doctors, and average customers.
  • Double tubing. Usually, this model is less expensive than the previous one. Some people claim it provides clearer sounds. It is more about personal preferences than a drastic difference between single and double tubing stethoscopes. Try different models, compare them, and choose which one is better for you particularly. But in double tubing models, two tubes can run together providing additional sounds. That’s why it is very important to compare different types of medical equipment by yourself.
  • Electronic stethoscopes. They are more expensive than ordinary models (up to 400$). Such models are a good variant for those who work in busy areas where most patients are concentrated. Electronic stethoscopes have buttons to control the volume and switch between the diaphragm and the bell like in dual head models. But this model can be pretty heavy to wear all day long.

If you’re a nursing student, we recommend considering the following models – Littmann Classic IISE (lightweight and dual-sided), Littmann Cardiology II (double-sided), and Prestige Medical Clinical Cardiology (dual-sided). Choose yours and good luck on work!