Auscultation is listening to the sounds of the body during a physical examination.
Auscultation is usually done using a tool called a stethoscope. Health care providers routinely listen to a person's lungs, heart, and intestines to evaluate these things about the sounds:
Providers also use auscultation to listen to the heart sounds of unborn infants. This can be done with a stethoscope or with sound waves (called Doppler ultrasound).
Auscultation can also be used to hear pulses in the arms and legs.
Dorland's Online Medical Dictionary. Available at: www.dorlands.com/def.jsp?id=100010441. Accessed June 1, 2015.
Goldman L. Approach to the patient with possible cardiovascular disease. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2015:chap 51.