What’s my budget?
This is a good place to start. Stethoscopes can cost anything from a few pounds up into the hundreds. Decide your price point and the decision becomes a lot easier.
If you’re looking for something basic or are prone to losing your stethoscope on a weekly basis, Amazon sell stethoscopes rock-bottom prices, as well as more high-end products. In our experience, it’s worth spending extra on a stethoscope if you will be using it regularly, and if you can afford it.
Here are a few examples, so you can see what you get for your cash at different price points:
What do I need a stethoscope for?
For most doctors, the answer to this question is straightforward: buy as good an all-round stethoscope as your budget permits. Be sure that you’re confident with the model you buy.
If you’re a paediatrician, consider whether you might need a paediatric stethoscope. These come with small-sized diaphragm and bell, making them ideal for your smallest patients.
Do I need to try before I buy?
If not, consider buying online to bag a better deal, and keep your eyes peeled for special offers on sites like Amazon.
Which brand do I like best?
Again, this is about what works best for you. If you like , go for an MDF. If you like , go for a Littmann. It’s worth trying a few different stethoscopes and asking your colleagues if you’re not sure – especially any friendly cardiologists you find in the mess.
What colour should I go for?
This seems like a minor point, but the colour of your stethoscope can say a lot about you. Would you prefer a more traditional colour like black, grey or navy, or would you like to go for something a bit brighter? Does your job involve breaking lots of bad news, or trying to cheer up children? Here are a few we liked:
What do you think about when buying a stethoscope? Let us know by leaving a comment below!