The Auscultation Assistant was originally conceived early during my fourth year of medical school at UCLA as a unique way to utilize the multimedia capabilities of the Internet to enhance teaching of physical diagnosis to second year medical students. The idea was developed into an individual creative project, and the initial site was first published onto the web at the end of my fourth year. I would like to thank Michael Wilkes, MD, PhD, for his support of this project.

     Although some of the graphics and sounds on this site are my own creation, several have also been gathered from a wide variety of sources throughout the Internet. In particular, I would like to thank Dr. Hans Pasterkamp from the University of Manitoba for his generous lending of the breath sounds used on this site. The original breath sounds along with many more can be found at his web site, the R.A.L.E. repository, and I would encourage anyone interested in learning more about breath sounds to visit it.

     Because it can be difficult to determine the exact origin of a graphic or sound once it is on a web page, it is possible that some of the sounds not recorded by myself may not be public domain. If the original author of any of the items utilized in this site wishes for them to be removed or would like acknowledgement for the use of the items, please contact me and I will immediately comply.

     The following texts were instrumental in creating this site:

  • Etchells, Edward, et al., “The Rational Clinical Examination: Does This Patient Have an Abnormal Systolic Murmur?”, Journal of the American Medical Association, February 19, 1997, Vol. 227, No. 7, pp 564-571
  • Isselbacher, Kurt, et al., Harrison’s Principals of Internal Medicine, Thirteenth edition, McGraw-Hill, Inc, 1994
  • Swartz, Mark, Textbook of Physical Diagnosis: History and Examination, Second edition, W.B. Saunders Company, 1994

     One my original inspirations for this site is an amazing program which was written by one of UCLA’s own professors, John Criley, MD. It is titled “The Physiologic Origins of Heart Sounds and Murmurs: The Unique Interactive Guide to Cardiac Diagnosis” and is published on CD-ROM for the PC and Macintosh. This program combines clever graphics, excellent recordings, and detailed text to help medical students understand murmur pathophysiology. Although none of the sounds or graphics from the CD were utilized in making this site, the idea of using the computer as an alternate means of teaching students about murmur physiology was one of the major influences which led to the development of this site.

     If you are looking for other excellent sites with heart sounds and murmurs, Agilent has a page devoted to auscultation with many further links.