Littmann Electronic Stethoscopes

The Littmann 3100 and 3200 are probably the best-known amplified stethoscopes and very popular. They look much like a standard stethoscope. They have noise reduction features as well as amplifying heart and lung sounds.

They can be used with adapted earpieces. They do not have an output socket so cannot be used with headphones or other accessories. Unsuitable for use with a cochlear implant.

So these stethoscopes are a good choice if you don’t mind taking out your hearing aids to use the stethoscope, if you can use adapted eartips or custom ear moulds or if you don’t wear hearing aids or implants. If this doesn’t apply or your hearing is too poor you’ll need to consider other makes.

Model 3200 can record sounds for playback later or Bluetooth transfer to a computer for record-keeping or telemedicine.

Other information:

  • Have you read the essential safety information: “limitations of hearing aids and implants?”
  • Consider funding
  • Arrange a trial period
  • And see how your audiogram matches up to heart and lung sounds to find out whether you need amplification or not.
  • If the spring in other stethoscope arms is so strong you find it uncomfortable, try the Thinklabs ds32a+ which has adjustable arms. I haven’t handled one myself yet so do let me know if you try this and how you get on. Thanks.
  • Don’t forget, hearing aids don’t usually reproduce the low frequencies well. So if you’re using earpieces, custom moulds or headphones over hearing aids you also need vents in your ear moulds or open fitting.
  • Certain electronic stethoscopes can link to hearing aids using accessories such as the T switch, direct audio input (DAI) cables or even FM or Bluetooth if your hearing aids have these facilities. However it is better to use earpieces or headphones if possible to avoid the problem of poor low frequency reproduction.

Which stethoscope? Comparison chart.

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