Buyer’s Guide: Best Stethoscopes for Nursing Students

Now that it’s fall and school is starting back up, many nursing students are ordering their last shipments of supplies before classes begin. Whether you’re a new student or looking to replace a beat-up stethoscope from last year, you’re probably wondering what the best stethoscope for nursing school is. Below, we walk you through five of the best options for every budget and scenario. (And if you’re feeling overwhelmed by all the types of stethoscopes, check out our guide to get up to speed before making your purchase.)

allheart traditional sprague rappaport type stethoscope

Best Budget Stethoscope: Discount Traditional Sprague Rappaport Type Stethoscope

Discount Traditional Sprague Rappaport Type Stethoscope If you’re a nursing student, you’re probably on a budget–and we totally understand. We’ve been there before. If you’ve got a lot of textbooks and an abundance of expenses this year, you might be looking to save some money on clinical supplies such as your stethoscope. If that’s the case, then we definitely recommend our Discount Traditional Sprague Rappaport Type Stethoscope. This dual-head stethoscope comes with five interchangeable chestpiece fittings, two spare diaphragms, one pair of mushroom-type ear tips and one pair of silicone ear tips, providing excellent value for the money. If you need an even more affordable stethoscope, we also offer a discount single-head stethoscope and a discount dual-head stethoscope.

Best Disposable Stethoscope: Littmann Disposable Stethoscope

Disposable medical supplies have gotten renewed interests as the coronavirus pandemic has exposed just how deadly infectious diseases can be. If you are anticipating coming into contact with infectious patients during clinicals, and you’re worried about your stethoscope being an avenue for contamination, you might want to invest in a stock of disposable stethoscopes. This model from Littmann comes in a cheerful yellow color. Use them once and then toss them when you’re done for peace of mind.

allheart traditional sprague rappaport type stethoscope

Most Trusted Stethoscope: 3M™ Littmann® Classic III™ Stethoscope

If you’ve researched nursing at all, then you have definitely heard of Littmann stethoscopes. While far from the cheapest brand in the business, the Littmann brand does make a quality product that will last you for years. It’s definitely a splurge for a student, but it’s a great gift to yourself. If your loved ones want to give you something nice to celebrate the start of a school year, a Littmann stethoscope is also a great idea. If you ask multiple people to chip in, the cost won’t be prohibitive, and this stethoscope is totally worth it. It comes in more than 30 color combinations and features high acoustic sensitivity, next generation tubing and tunable diaphragms on both the adult and pediatric sides of the chestpiece. If you can afford it, you won’t regret getting a Littmann stethoscope!

Best Mid-Level Stethoscope: 3M™ Littmann® Lightweight II S.E. 28" Stethoscope

If you’re looking for a stethoscope in the mid-level price range, your best bet is Littmann brand’s entry-level model, the Lightweight II S.E. 28" Stethoscope. The Lightweight dual-head stethoscope features a tunable diaphragm that alternates between low and high frequencies without turning over the chestpiece, and a double-leaf binaural spring allows easy tension adjustment for a comfortable fit. Your patients will also appreciate the non-chill rim and diaphragm assembly, and the lightweight, adjustable-tension headset makes it comfortable for clinicians to wear.

allheart traditional sprague rappaport type stethoscope

Best Bundle with Stethoscope: Prestige Medical Basic Aneroid Sphygmomanometer with Dual-Head Stethoscope Kit

If you need a sphygmomanometer (blood pressure cuff) as well as a stethoscope, then you might be interested in this affordable kit from Prestige Medical. This kit includes a black nylon aneroid sphygmomanometer with index and range markings, a gauge holder, an artery indicator label, a standard inflation bulb, a precision calibrated gauge and a nylon carrying case. Of course, it also comes with a traditional dual-head stethoscope featuring a lightweight aluminum chestpiece with an inlaid non-chill ring, chrome-plated brass binaurals, black PVC tubing and an extra set of soft ear tips.

As you shop for stethoscopes for nursing school, don’t forget to look for other accessories, such as carrying cases, stethoscope name tags, stethoscope charms and more. While chestpiece engraving is available for most stethoscopes, tube engraving is available only for Littmann stethoscopes. This can set your piece apart and help you keep track of it and protect your investment. If you’ve got an older stethoscope that still has some life left in it, you can also buy certain replacement parts, such as ear tips, to prolong its use. Happy shopping!