Technology | Stethoscopes | March 22, 2016

3M Littman Introduces Cardiology IV Stethoscope

Stethoscope features tunable diaphragms both sides of chestpiece to help physicians hear different frequency sounds

3M Littman stethoscope, Cardiology IV, tunable frequency

March 22, 2016 — 3M Littmann Stethoscopes introduced the new Cardiology IV stethoscope, engineered to help clinicians better perceive hard-to-hear sounds in the body. This includes the high-frequency sound of aortic regurgitation grade 2 heart murmur at 48 dBA, comparable to the high-frequency buzz of bee wings.

The Cardiology IV stethoscope has tunable diaphragms on both sides of the chestpiece, allowing users to hear different frequency sounds by simply changing the amount of pressure applied to the chestpiece. The versatile chestpiece features pediatric and adult sides. The single-piece diaphragms have a crevice-free surface that offers easy cleaning. The stethoscope’s dual-lumen tubing eliminates rubbing noises that traditional double tubes create. The next-generation tubing also lasts longer and resists stains. Finally, snap-tight, soft-sealing ear tips form an acoustic seal that helps shut out external noises.

American College of Cardiology (ACC) President Kim Allan Williams Sr., M.D., FACC, recently highlighted the critical role of the stethoscope in arriving at accurate diagnoses, and stressed the importance of clinician education in a blog post. Williams wrote: “…basic auscultation skills – the ability to listen to and interpret sounds from the heart – are important skills for physicians to develop and maintain, even as new technologies provide complementary information. Learning to correctly interpret heart sounds reinforces the understanding of normal and abnormal physiology. The fact that doctors are failing to obtain and maintain this skill is something we should work to improve.”

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