Heart+Sound Solutions Care and Cleaning Methods
Regular cleaning is necessary to protect both yourself and your patient's. This is even more important if you work in high traffic areas such as the emergency room, or out in the field as a paramedic/EMT. Studies show that one in three stethoscopes are contaminated with MRSA, a potentially fatal bacteria.
Here are some tips to clean your stethoscope to ensure that you are doing everything possible to keep you and your patient's safe.
Use an alcohol pad in between patients to clean your stethoscope thoroughly. The way to break the infectious chain is to prevent cross contamination. Start by removing the earpieces and cleaning the headset down to the chest piece and diaphragm. Be sure to use at least a 70% Isopropyl alcohol solution.
NEVER soak your stethoscope in any kind of liquid. You can, however, use a cloth and antibacterial soap to clean your stethoscope. Dry your stethoscope completely before storing it away. You can also use a vinyl protectant such as Armor-All to your tubing to keep it from breaking down as quickly.
- Remember, wearing your stethoscope around your neck is treated as a badge of honor, but it does introduce it to oils from your body as well as your hair that will break down your scope over time. As the tubing breaks down it will become more prone to cracks and could also absorb the ink of your scrubs. This may be more noticeable with white tubing.
- Be sure to store your stethoscope away from harsh elements such as heat, cold, solvent, and oils.
**Normal usage may loosen the ear pieces so remember to tighten them up periodically. Also, a little trick of the trade with screw on ear pieces is to apply a "small" amount of super glue around the threads before screwing the ear pieces on. Stays in place AND don't have to worry with the earpieces popping off.. win/win!**
We hope these tips will provide you with useful tips and information in order to gain the longest life out of your stethoscope!