Early chest auscultation techniques and stethoscopes are featured.
The binaural stethoscope, invented in 1851, is credited to Arthur Leared, a physician from the United Kingdom.
The illustration was from a text by Adam Raciborski entitled "Nouveau manuel complet d'auscultation et de percussion" or "An Elementary Treatise on Auscultation and Percussion".
Bowle's stethoscope consisted of a flat metal chest piece with a shallow concave chamber covered by a flexible
diaphragm. The chest piece connected to rubber tubing which connected to the ear pieces. One advantage cited in the patent application was that the device could be used without requiring patients to disrobe.
It was manufactured by G. P. Pilling & Son in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
"Listening to Chest Sounds with the Ear to the Back: Germany 1916
The stethoscope, the first of modern medicine's necessary tools, was invented in 1818 by Rene Laennec, M.D. (1781-1826). It revolutionized diagnosis and treatment of chest disease and sparked the rise of the French School of Medicine. Because heart and lung sounds were magnified Laennec was able to establish a disease classification system based on the various tones detected. The use of this instrument also enabled the physician to remain at a safer distance from an infected patient. In this photograph, taken in the throes of World War I, a military physician places his head on a patient's back to listen to lung sounds. Prior to the Laennec stethoscope chest sounds were heard by simply placing the ear against the chest or back. As a quick screening method it worked for centuries. European physicians used this method and Laennec's simple tube stethoscope, well into the 1940s. An American physician, Dr. Cammann of New York, invented the binaural stethoscope in 1855. This advanced instrument was largely ignored by European physicians, perhaps because of its American origin. In the nineteenth century it was the American who traveled to Europe to learn the latest techniques. European physicians only came to the United States as invited dignitaries. It was not until after World War I that America became the acknowledged world leader in medical research, technique and education."
The caption on the photo stated "The monaural stethoscope was invented in 1818 by French physician Rene Laennec. The device remained in use in Europe until the 1940s. The physician was in close contact with the patient, a detriment when patients had severe, contagious infectious disease."
The caption on this photo stated: "This physician in a French chest clinic is percussing (tapping) the patient's back to evaluate by the resonance the presence or absence of fluid or other mass. The first practical diagnostic tool in examining the chest - percussion was developed by Viennese physician, Leopold Auenbrugger, M.D. (1722-1809). In his 1761 text Inventum Novum Ex Percussione he noted the sound of tapping on the chest "produces analogous results to those observed by striking a cask, for example, in different degrees of emptiness or fullness." Auenbrugger verified his findings with postmortem examinations and experimentation with cadavers. He filled their lungs with various amounts of fluid and evaluated the sounds produced. Despite the translation of his text into French by Roziere de la Chassagne, M.D. in 1770, his exemplary research did not gain immediate favor. The value of percussion finally was heralded in the 1808 classic by Jean Nicholas Corvisart, M.D. (1755-1820). With Dr. Rene Laennec's invention of the stethoscope in 1818 and his publication of two volumes on chest disease, 1819 and 1826, the main diagnostic tools for diagnosis of chest disease were established."