Saturday, November 13, 2010

Interesting Facts: #5

The stethoscope was invented in 1816 by French physician Rene Laennec.

Before the invention of the stethoscope, doctors listened to the sounds of body organs by placing their ear on the patient’s chest. Laennec felt uncomfortable about touching the bare chest of a young woman so he used a rolled up newspaper. Afterward he said 'I was surprised and pleased to hear the beating of the heart much more clearly than if I had applied my ear directly to the chest.' He then made a stethoscope out of a hollow wooden tube, much like an ear trumpet, and further designs followed out of metal and ivory. In 1850, George Camman first used rubber in the construction of a stethoscope.


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