Listen to your heart

Posted by: Tampa Cardio

On: January 11, 2016

What is the doctor listening for when they press the stethoscope to your chest, back or abdomen?

The stethoscope, a y-shaped listening device which hooks into the physicians ears allows them to amplify the sounds coming from inside of the patient’s body. They can detect both high and low frequency depending on which side is used.


When listening to the heart – a normal healthy heart should sound as a ‘lub-dub’in regular steady rhythm. When a ‘wooshing’ sound (the sound of fluid moving) is heard it is a sign of a heart murmur. This is an irregularity in beat. These may be loud or very faint. Murmurs are not always a sign of a problem, but they are an indication and require further investigation to determine if treatment is needed.

Blood Pressure

During a blood pressure reading, a stethoscope is used in conjunction with the arm cuff to listen to the pulse in the arm.


The patient is instructed to breathe slowly in and out repeatedly while the scope is moved over different areas of the chest and back. Through the stethoscope, when examining the lungs, the doctor will listen for cracking noises and wheezes. If the airway is constricted, wheezing noises will be heard. Crackling noises are present when there is fluid in the lugs. Neither are normal or healthy and both require further evaluation.


Proper bowel and digestive activity can be heard through the abdomen. Gurgling is normal. It is the sounds of foods and gasses passing through.

With the use of a stethoscope doctors are able to determine valuable clinical information that can help to confirm normal body functions or make a diagnosis of the cause of health problems. Give us a call here at Tampa Cardiovascular Associates at 813-975-2800 or visit for more important health information.

Posted by: Tampa Cardio

On: 11/01/2016

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