Surgeon & Healthcare Futurist Loyal to Digital Stethoscope

Summary: The Eko CORE 500™ Digital Stethoscope helps surgeon Rafael Grossmann, MD, hear sounds, work quickly, and connect with patients in a noisy, fast-paced acute care setting.
Dr. Rafael Grossmann wears the Eko CORE 500™ Digital Stethoscope
Embracing healthcare technology with CORE™ 

Rafael Grossmann, MD, MHDS, FACS, is a Venezuelan-American general surgeon and a healthcare futurist who practices in New Hampshire. He views technology as an opportunity to make healthcare more efficient, intuitive, cost-effective, and humane. He was the first surgeon to use a Google Glass headset during live surgery and has delivered several TED Talks about the potential of high-tech tools in patient care.

He's passionate about Eko Health’s CORE™ digital stethoscope technology — a high-tech solution he's been using since the company's first stethoscope iteration. He wants his colleagues to experience the unparalleled sound quality and electrocardiogram (ECG) capabilities of Eko's suite of digital stethoscopes that can help them enhance their patient care.

“I’ve always had a keen interest in utilizing technology to enhance our connections and communication among ourselves, with data, and with patients,” he expressed. “Eko stethoscopes are an excellent example of the potential of technology, and I’ve carried every version of their stethoscopes in my medical kit.”

Innovation and early adoption

Dr. Grossmann’s career has focused on trauma, acute care surgery, and education. He also works to explore, help develop, and advocate for the integration of exponential technologies to improve healthcare and medical education.

“Over the past two decades, I’ve been deeply involved in innovating and fostering advancements in the health tech industry. This journey encompassed the early stages of telemedicine, cutting-edge surgical headsets, robotics, and advanced clinical instruments like Eko’s digital stethoscopes,” he explained. “I’m committed to expanding the ways technology can improve communication and connectivity. This has paved the way for numerous engaging collaborations with various intriguing health tech companies.”

 In 2013, he attended a conference designed to expose healthcare professionals to technologies that were set to revolutionize patient care. One of those technologies was Google Glass. Another was Eko Health. “I was genuinely enthusiastic and got involved with Eko, acquiring my first digital stethoscope a few months later. Since then, our connection has remained strong, and I’ve had the opportunity to use every device they’ve developed. Along the way, I’ve been offering feedback to help improve their stethoscope technology," he shared.

He is currently using the Eko CORE 500™ Digital Stethoscope with TrueSound™ technology. “It’s pretty much in my pocket all the time. It’s an amazing device. I don’t think there’s a stethoscope today that really compares to it, its sound, or features,” he said. His three favorite features are the sound technology, its ECG capability, and its instantaneous activation, which makes it incredibly convenient for his fast-paced acute care and trauma practice.

TrueSound™ offers clearer audio in ER

The CORE 500™’s audio enhancements are vital to hearing lung, heart, and bowel sounds in Dr. Grossmann’s busy, noisy practice. Eko’s TrueSound™ technology provides in-ear speakers, 40x amplification, active noise cancellation, and three audio filter modes. All of these innovations make sounds sharper, louder, and more defined.

“The device’s audio quality is unparalleled. In the chaotic settings of the ER or trauma bay, where it’s consistently busy and noisy, the ability to precisely discern different sounds and their variations is crucial, and the CORE 500™ makes it effortless,” he emphasized.

In an acute care or trauma setting, he noted that the device’s automatic on/off feature ensures that the stethoscope is instantly accessible when needed. When returned to his pocket, it automatically powers off, preserving battery life for extended usage. 

Digital stethoscope with ECG tracings

The Eko CORE 500™ also features a built-in ECG with full-color display. Dr. Grossmann appreciates having the utility of this tool at his fingertips.

“You’re not just listening to the heart and lung sounds at that moment, but you can also see the ECG tracing before you have a patient hooked up to a monitor. This is a very quick two-in-one shot. With one device, you can look at things very, very quickly without having to do anything else. I don’t have to open a phone app. I don’t have to do anything else. I just put it on the patient’s chest and immediately the screen comes on. So, I’m listening and I’m looking at the ECG,” he said. “Those are the kinds of things that make an impact in your daily practice. You may not think about that when you’re buying a stethoscope, but then when you’re actually dealing with it in the hospital, it makes a big difference.”

High-quality stethoscope encourages more humane healthcare

The CORE 500™ and other high-tech tools, Dr. Grossmann said, free him to better engage with patients and families.

“Let’s say I’m listening to your grandmother’s heart. I can show you her heart beating or her heart tracing. We can use these additional features to not just improve our understanding of the data that we gather from the patient, but we can also better integrate the patient and family in the process of care. It makes our care more humane and more engaging,” he said. “Plus, when these technologies can aid diagnosis or expedite care, it liberates us to talk more to the patient, touch the patient, laugh and cry with the patient. It can help us be more empathetic, more compassionate, and more connected to our patients.”

New technology helps shape the future of patient care

Dr. Grossmann encourages healthcare providers to try an advanced stethoscope from Eko Health and help shape the future of healthcare technology.

“We’re responsible for offering feedback to the creators of these innovative tools, and the industry, to improve their functionality in addressing our challenges,” he emphasized. “Don’t dismiss technology without trying it. Engage with it to address your issues and contribute to its improvement. It’s an exciting era to be in healthcare and health tech,” he added.

To learn more about Dr. Grossmann’s efforts in healthcare technology, visit his website at  or join him on X (formerly Twitter).

Learn how Eko’s CORE™ digital stethoscope technology amplifies sounds and provides ECG readings for more efficient practice.