Forceps refer to the smooth metal instruments that appear similar to a large spoon or tong. The thumb forceps are used dominantly in plastic surgery cases. Plastic surgeons are trained to use thumb forceps when they have to deal with sensitive and delicate tissues. The wrong application of the forceps can result in devastating results, sometimes severely damaging tissues permanently.
Grasping tissue with thumb forceps
In plastic surgeries and other cosmetic procedures, grasping tissue is important. This is where thumb forceps come into play. The tip of the forceps consists of teeth that can securely hold a delicate tissue. The thumb forceps are designed to ensure there is minimal damage to the tissues. Delicate handling of tissues and traction procedures are the USPs of thumb forceps.
Whether a plastic surgeon wants to grasp, hold, or manipulate the tissue, he/she uses thumb forceps. One has to compress between the thumb and the forefinger by using the spring forceps or thumb forceps. They are also referred to as surgical tweezers, pinning forceps, non-locking forceps, gripping forceps, and so on.
Two groups of thumb forceps
The surgical forceps are studied in two groups:
- Non-disposable forceps are designed to withstand a wide array of chemical and physical impacts of cleaning agents, sterilization procedures, body fluid, secretion, blood, and so on. They are made of high-grade metals, usually stainless steel.
- Disposable thumb forceps are made of low-quality materials like plastic and must be disposed of after a single- use.
Different tips in a thumb forceps
The thumb forceps are available in a plethora of tips. One will find flat, ringed, cupped, serrated, grooved, diamond-dusted tips, and some even have a teeth-like appearance. The specific design with different types of tips eliminates the damages incurred on tissues. Thumb forceps don’t have to exert excessive pressure to maintain a strong grip while using it for plastic surgery procedures. Flat-tip forceps are usually avoided during delicate and sensitive tissues as they can be more damaging than serrated forceps. The surgeon can use angled, curved, or straight tip forceps depending on the treatment requirements.
Thumb forceps are commonly held like a pen grip between the thumb and index finger or middle finger. There is a spring tension at the top end that holds the grasping points apart till pressure is exerted. This helps the user to easily grip the forceps, manipulate, and release objects or tissue with different pressure exertions.
Carbon-fiber tipped forceps
Regarding plastic surgeries, carbon fiber-tipped thumb forceps are used. They offer multiple benefits over standard forceps. The carbon-ceramic doesn’t feature any traces of metal residue on the tissues. Furthermore, the forceps are high heat resistant, corrosion-resistant, and are not electrically conductive. In other words, carbon-fiber thumb forceps are perfect for plastic and cosmetic surgery procedures.
Whether it is in the field of plastic surgery, or any other medical requirement, thumb forceps play a vital role. Apart from medical emergencies and surgeries, thumb forceps are also used in laboratories, and research centers. With an advancement in medical science, the design of thumb forceps is also updated allowing more precision while dealing with minute tissues.