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The Many Uses of Neurosurgery Instruments

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Neurosurgery involves complex surgical procedures. Surgeons treat neurological conditions using innovative techniques, such as deep brain stimulation, awake brain surgery, stereotactic radiosurgery, intraoperative MRI, and minimally invasive surgery. Complex surgical procedures require a wide variety of neurosurgery instruments.

Neurosurgery instruments include those used for cranial and spinal surgery, bipolar coagulation, and drilling. The Medical Device Store provides new and reconditioned instruments for the four categories. There are more than 600 instruments used in neurosurgery.

The primary instruments are bone rongeurs, retractors, and titanium clips. Specialized tools are required for cranial and spinal operations. They include trocars and spinal spreading systems. Trocars are medical devices placed through the abdomen during laparoscopic surgery that function as portals for other instruments, such as staplers, scissors, and graspers.

Spatulas and Forceps

There is a range of spatulas and forceps used for neurosurgery procedures. They include tumor-grasping forceps, flexible spatulas, spatula forceps, brain spatulas, clip applying forceps, seizing forceps, and dura-protecting forceps. The names of many of the instruments indicate their use.


Neurosurgery retractors serve specific uses during neurosurgery procedures. The different types of retractors include laminectomy retractors, spinal spreaders, hemilaminectomy retractors, lamina and cervical spreaders, nerve root retractors, and laminectomy spreaders.


Doctors use a range of scissors during neurosurgery procedures. These include trigeminal scissors, microscissors, and dura scissors.

Micro Instruments

Micro instruments are used for high-precision, extremely delicate surgeries. Examples include dilators, respirators, needle holders, curettes, knives, probes, nerve hooks, and dissectors.


Rongeurs cut the spinal column and the tissue and cartilage on the skull and bone. One type is the intervertebral disc rongeur, which is often used in laminectomies.

Other Instruments Used in Neurosurgery

Some additional neurosurgery devices include curettes, dissectors, and hooks. Each set of devices has a specific use. There are sympathectomy hooks, upwards disc curettes, dura dissectors, separators, nerve hooks, vertebral elevators, and exploration hooks.

Other instruments include saws, trephines, and skull punches. A trephine is a boring instrument with a cylindrical blade. There are several designs and dimensions. Specific uses dictate the design and dimensions used. Typical uses include cutting round pieces of corneas for eye surgery, cutting holes in the skull, and harvesting cylindrical-shaped bone for testing and studying the bone.

Neurological surgeons also use irrigating and aspirating instruments for cancellous bone extraction and hypophysectomy procedures. Irrigating and aspirating devices include irrigating and suction tubes, suction cannulas, and ventricular needles. The cancellous bone instruments harvest cylindrical bone marrow from the iliac or pelvic crest. The technology applies when small quantities of nonstructural grafts are necessary for skeletal reconstruction therapy. A hypophysectomy is the removal of the pituitary gland (hypophysis). The tools that are used include enucleators, hooks, dissectors, scoops, speculums, chisels, and curettes.