Surgical instrument

A surgical instrument is a tool or device for performing specific actions or carrying out desired effects during a surgery or operation, such as modifying biological tissue, or to provide access for viewing it.[1] Over time, many different kinds of surgical instruments and tools have been invented. Some surgical instruments are designed for general use in all sorts of surgeries, while others are designed for only certain specialties or specific procedures. Accordingly, the nomenclature of surgical instruments follows certain patterns, such as a description of the action it performs (for example, scalpel, hemostat), the name of its inventor(s) (for example, the Kocher forceps),[2] or a compound scientific name related to the kind of surgery (for example, a tracheotome is a tool used to perform a tracheotomy).

Various scalpels

The expression surgical instrumentation is somewhat interchangeably used with surgical instruments,[3] but its meaning in medical jargon is the activity of providing assistance to a surgeon with the proper handling of surgical instruments during an operation, by a specialized professional, usually a surgical technologist or sometimes a nurse or radiographer. [4][5][6]


There are several classes of surgical instruments:[7]

An important relative distinction regarding surgical instruments is the amount of bodily disruption or tissue trauma that their use might cause the patient. Terms relating to this issue are 'atraumatic' and minimally invasive.[9]

See alsoEdit



  1. ^ "Surgical Instrument - an overview | ScienceDirect Topics". Retrieved 2022-02-22.
  2. ^ "Kocher's Forceps Medical Definition | Merriam-Webster Medical Dictionary". Retrieved 2016-02-15.
  3. ^ Renee Nimitz, Surgical Instrumentation: an Interactive Approach (Saunders, 2010) 1416037020, pxiii
  4. ^ "Surgical Technologists : Occupational Outlook Handbook: : U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics". Retrieved 2022-02-23.
  5. ^ "Radiologic and MRI Technologists : Occupational Outlook Handbook: : U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics". Retrieved 2022-02-23.
  6. ^ "Scrub Nurse vs. Surgical Tech: Decoding the Differences in the OR and Beyond". Retrieved 2022-02-23.
  7. ^ Visenio, Michael (26 March 2019). "Commonly Used Surgical Instruments". Retrieved 23 February 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  8. ^ "Laparoscopic graspers", Accessed 16 August 2013
  9. ^ "The Basics of Surgical Instruments and their uses". City College. 2015-08-03. Retrieved 2022-02-23.

External linksEdit


  • Wells, MP, Bradley, M: Surgical Instruments A Pocket Guide. W.B. Saunders, 1998.