Through the ages medical practitioners have used various methods and tools to establish a diagnosis – using their senses, patients’ descriptions of their symptoms, instruments and tests. Various individual diagnostic instruments, such as stethoscopes and clinical thermometers are represented in other categories of the collection. The category of diagnostic sets and kits represents sets of instruments, often with a number of interchangeable parts, used to diagnose specific conditions - such as the thoracic aspiration sets which were used to diagnose tuberculosis and other morbidities of the lung. These diagnostic sets were often housed in elegant purpose-made velvet-lined cases convenient for use during house calls. Larger diagnostic sets were housed in chests or boxes principally for use in the surgery.