Counterfeit stethoscopes may compromise clinical diagnosis warns global manufacturer 3M. An extended distributor registration programme across West Europe guarantees the validity of your Littmann stethoscope purchase.
Recently featured on the BBC’s Fake Britain programme (Series 7, Episode 10), the trade in fake stethoscopes is putting lives at risk and may impact on the diagnosis of potentially life-threatening conditions.
As a medical professional, you need your tools of the trade to perform to the highest standards – and that’s why you choose a Littmann brand stethoscope from 3M, synonymous with acoustic excellence. But do you take the same care about where you purchase your Littmann stethoscope from?
The Internet abounds with auction sites offering Littmann stethoscopes at bargain prices – often at 30 to 40 per cent lower than the recommended retail price. The seller may also advertise high volumes of available stock. But whilst everybody likes a bargain, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Some offerings may also get close to the retail price and further fool you into thinking you are getting a genuine product.
Fake stethoscopes are becoming more sophisticated and closer in appearance to the genuine article. To other than an expert eye, the stethoscope will likely look real, with a branded box, current colour of tubing, Littmann chestpiece logo, soft-sealing ear tips and product information leaflet. It may also carry a lot number, serial number and fake CE mark as well. But what about its performance?