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Rappaport Sprague Stethoscopes - An Alternative To Expensive Stethoscopes

Apr 5, 2008
Stethoscope have been around for many years, but only during the last 100 years have they evolved to resemble those used by medical practitioners today. The changes throughout the ages have allowed for more precise diagnosis of patients, but with that evolution has come an increase in price. Discount stethoscopes can still be found today, though, which are crafted of the highest quality. Knowing the assets for which to look in a discount stethoscope, the physician can find one to meet his needs without overwhelming his budget.

Doctors have always felt the need to discover what was going on inside the body. For millennia, the only way this could be accomplished was to cut into a body or to listen to it. The ancient Greeks adopted the habit of putting their ear to the body. This method was passed down generations until 1816 when a modest French physician felt that there had to be a better way to listen to the sounds inside the body. That Frenchman was a Dr. Laennec. He had several female patients and thought it awkward to lay his head on their chests to hear their heartbeat. One day in the office, he had a brainstorm. Grabbing a stack of nearby papers, he rolled them into a tube and put his ear to one end, with the other end on his patient. This was probably the lowest cost discount stethoscope ever made. He was able to hear the sounds inside the woman without having to directly touch her. Later he further developed this concept into a monaural - or one eared - stethoscope. It would not be until the 1840s when binaural - two eared, stereo - stethoscopes were introduced.

Like other medical commodities of the era, they were wildly popular. Unfortunately, just like the physicians of the age, people got what they paid for. The available discount stethoscopes, like the discount medical practitioners, were often untrustworthy and unlikely to operate in the proper manner. Choosing a doctor then could be hit or miss since formal, standardized medical school was virtually unheard of, and the education for doctors could vary widely. Most doctors got their supplies from catalogs, and some of them were unsure of how to use their discount stethoscopes. Even if they were aware of the correct use of the stethoscopes, there were some limitations to the models of the day. All of the stethoscopes used in the 19th century used only a bell for their chest piece. This only enabled them to hear low-frequency sounds. High frequency sounds would be indistinguishable until the early 20th century when diaphragms where added as an option. It was not until 1940 when Sprague and Rappaport combined the bell and diaphragm onto one chest piece, creating the most commonly used stethoscopes today, the Sprague Rappaport Stethoscope.

There are many things the physician should require when he is looking for discount stethoscopes. The fit of the earpieces is vital to the functioning of the scope. If the tips do not comfortably fit into the ears, critical sounds for diagnosis could be lost. The tubing should be heavy walled, to block outside noise, and resistant to sticking and cracking while still effectively conducting sound and being flexible enough for use. To prevent allergic reaction in patients or users, it should preferably be latex-free. Even discount stethoscopes should be crafted to be heat, water, rust, and impact resistant. The quality of the components should not be sacrificed in the name of saving a few cents. There are available discount stethoscopes which use high-caliber alloys for longevity.

Finding discount stethoscopes to service the busy practitioner is not difficult by knowing the assets to seek.
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To learn more visit our diagnostic equipment & supplies section or read more about use of Rappaport Sprague stethoscopes.
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