As the practice of medicine becomes more technologically advanced, the stethoscope – the ubiquitous diagnostic device that’s been draped around the necks of healthcare providers for more than two centuries – remains the very first tool most doctors reach for to help understand what’s happening inside of their patients’ bodies.
In the hands of a trained provider, the stethoscope is still considered an unparalleled diagnostic instrument.
3M Littmann Stethoscopes and Eko – a company that combines advanced stethoscopes, software and AI-powered analysis – have joined forces to build upon the rich diagnostic legacy of the Littmann stethoscope by creating a new stethoscope that helps clinicians to get a clearer picture of their patients’ health.
Introducing the 3M™ Littmann® CORE Digital Stethoscope.
The 3M Littmann CORE Digital Stethoscope offers up to 40 times sound amplification (at peak frequency, vs. analog mode) and active noise cancellation when operating in digital mode. The stethoscope connects to Eko software on a smart device, enabling clinicians to see, save and share soundwaves, so they can consult with and educate other clinicians.
Kristi Barnett, senior director of 3M medical devices, is excited about this new stethoscope and its implications for clinicians:
“This combination is a game-changer. It allows a physician in rural America or a nurse treating patients in a non-office setting to have access to cutting-edge clinical decision support. This collaboration brings together two innovative companies that are focused on delivering comprehensive health care solutions that drive better patient outcomes.”
The 3M Littmann CORE Digital Stethoscope brings listening to a whole new level. The digital and analog listening modes make it possible for clinicians to customize their listening experience. This can be especially helpful when conducting assessments in noisy or chaotic environments.
Additionally, the tunable diaphragms on both sides of the double-sided chestpiece are designed to help with hearing high- and low-frequency sounds by simply adjusting the amount of pressure applied to the chestpiece. Snap-tight, soft-sealing eartips conform to ears for an excellent acoustic seal and comfortable fit, helping clinicians navigate days with added comfort. When paired with Eko software and AI (purchased separately), the 3M Littmann CORE Digital Stethoscope may aid in the detection of suspected murmurs. Auscultation sounds and visualizations may also be live streamed to remote providers (purchased separately).
The inherent power of the stethoscope lies in its ability to connect clinician and patient. Listening to the patient’s story provides an opportunity for providers to get the most out of the basic physical examination – which remains a vital part of preventive medicine and a ritual of great importance.
In many cases the stethoscope is the first line of contact between providers and their patients. It’s the ultimate icebreaker – a conduit for physical closeness – which can help establish trust and ease anxiety. The more we can give clinicians the opportunity to bond with their patients, the more we may help curb burnout and keep the joy of patient care alive.
At its core, the stethoscope helps clinicians listen first.
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