8 Parts of Stethoscope Guide: Learn Anatomy, Functions & Diagram

Overview of Stethoscope Anatomy

The stethoscope is an acoustic medical instrument that listens to the sounds of a human and animal body. Any healthcare professional places a headset or chest piece of the stethoscope against the patient’s body normally, chest, stomach, or back. This chest piece picks up the sound from that organ and transfers it from the tubing to the earpiece of the stethoscope. So, healthcare professionals hear that sound clearly and detect symptom of the patent and treat it accordingly. Different parts of the stethoscope make it very sensitive to hearing sound clearly. These stethoscope parts are made with high precision and have very good materials.

Parts of Stethoscope Diagram

Following are the 8 parts of the stethoscope.

Parts of Stethoscope, Names, Functions & Diagram

Parts of a Stethoscope Labeled

  • Chest Piece
  • Diaphragm
  • Bell
  • Tubing
  • Stem
  • Headset
  • Ear tubes
  • Ear tips

Stethoscope Parts and Functions

Chest Piece

The chest piece is also called as head of the stethoscope. It is a combination of the diaphragm, bell, and stem. It is very much responsible for generating sound waves from vibrations in the body & transferring sound waves to the ear.

To detect the vibrations chest piece is pressed on the back, chest, and stomach of the patient. Some special stethoscopes can work effectively against clothing or bandages also.

Usually, a stethoscope comes with one side and two side chest pieces. One side chest piece has one diaphragm, and some chest piece has a tunable or pressure-sensitive diaphragm that acts as both bell and diaphragm.

Some two-sided chest pieces have one side diaphragm and one side bell. Its selection depends on the medical condition.


The diaphragm is round and circular in the cross-section. Its large and round section allows the medical professional to hear a wider area of the patient body.

This diaphragm has better sensing sound quality than a bell. Generally, this diaphragm is made up of steel and directly touches the body. So, there are chances of chill or coldness.

To overcome this effect, some stethoscope comes with the feature of no chill. This diaphragm allows touching the patient without any discomfort.


The circular section of the chest piece opposite the diaphragm is called a bell. It has a smaller diameter than the diaphragm. Bell is responsible for detecting low-frequency sounds only.

It is useful to detect the sound of skinny patients. Bell has a non-chill ring which gives more comfort to the patient when it is placed on a naked area.


Tubing is nothing but a soft & flexible line of stethoscopes. It is made of Poly Vinyl Chloride. Its function is to transfer the sound of a heartbeat from the chest piece to the ear of the user.

Generally, a stethoscope comes with a single tube and a double-lumen tube. The double-lumen tube divides into halves inside, which create left and right paths.

So, the user can hear that sound with good efficiency and accuracy.


The stem is part of the stethoscope, which connects the tubing to the chest piece. Generally, the material of the stem is steel. Although, it is a joint of two-part.

Its function is to allow the user to switch the diaphragm or bell. It is done by simply rotating the chest piece.


A headset is a combination of ear tips, ear tubes, tension springs, & lumen tubing. This headset is an important part that ensures to flow of the sound in a very efficient manner without any disturbance in sound quality. This headset forms very comfortably to the user’s ear.

Ear tubes

Ear tubes are the parts of stethoscopes & generally their material is steel. It connects lumen tubing to the ear tips. Its function is to transfer the sound from the chest piece to the user’s ear.

The quality of sound is mainly dependent upon the quality of the ear tube. It can accomplish by enhancing the accost design of the stethoscope. The ear tube divides into left and right channels to get a better sound quality.

Ear tips

Ear tips are the part of the stethoscope that we inserted into our ears. The material of the ear tips is rubber or silicone. These ear tips are connected to an ear tube to transmit sound.

Generally, a stethoscope comes with 3-4 different types of ear tips. The choice of correct ear tips is very much responsible for greater sound accuracy.


Today’s new and advanced technology is making various innovative tools and gadgets to make human life easier. The same is with stethoscopes. Every doctor in the world is wearing a stethoscope. It’s an identity for them. The first process of medical checkups starts with the heart-beat checking with a stethoscope.

So all the parts of the stethoscope are made with quality material to achieve a better result.

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