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How to Replace Stethoscope Tubing

By Bill Herrfeldt ; Updated July 27, 2017

In 1816, a French doctor, Rene Theophile-Hyacinthe Laennec, discovered a way to improve the diagnosis of cardiovascular disease. While more sophisticated methods that have been invented since, the stethoscope remains a weapon in most doctor's arsenal. Occasionally, the tubing on the stethoscope must be changed because it has become brittle or has been cut or for some other reason. It is less expensive to replace it than to buy a new one.

Buy new tubing. You can find ready-made tubing for your stethoscope at any medical supply house, or you can purchase it online. Expect to pay up to $30 for the tubing, much less than most doctors invest in their stethoscopes. If you are interested in lengthening your stethoscope, you'll need to add about 6 inches for the binaurals, or listening devices. Tubing comes in an array of colors and you must make sure that it will accommodate the dimensions of your hardware. Also, if your diaphragm is reversible, remember there are two places where you must install the tubing.

Remove to old tubing. Simply twist the tubing from both of the binaurals and the diaphragm. Occasionally, this will not be possible, particularly if the tubing is old and dry. Carefully cut away the old tubing; and with a rag soaked in rubbing alcohol, remove the remnants of the tubing on the both binaural and the diaphragm.

Replace with your new tubing. Gently twist the tubing on both binaurals and the diaphragm. Once done, your stethoscope will be like new. Some manufacturers provide new binaurals with the new tubes, but they will cost more.

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