What is the Difference Between Surgical and Bandage Scissors?

What is the Difference Between Surgical and Bandage Scissors?

Discover which scissors are best suited for specific medical procedures and tasks. Perfect for healthcare professionals and medical students looking to expand their knowledge on surgical instruments.
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When performing surgery, there are various types of scissors used. The main distinctions lie in their blade type and degree of bluntness.

What are Surgical Scissors

Surgical scissors are instruments used for cutting tissue, bandages, and other medical accessories. They come in either straight or curved designs with various blade types available.

Most surgical scissors feature ring handles, though some also have slightly curved solid handles – these include rib shears and eye scissors.

Surgical scissors are typically constructed from stainless steel or tungsten carbide. The latter is five times harder than standard steel, making it more durable.

Some specialized scissors are designed specifically for cutting sutures and ligatures intraoperatively. These typically feature a notch in the lower blade that allows the thread to be hooked and quickly cut.

What are Bandage Scissors

Bandage Scissors are lightweight and durable shears used for cutting various medical materials. Usually made of stainless steel, these scissors have been sterilized after each use. They’re commonly used to size dressings and removing circumferential bandages as well as more challenging materials like umbilical cords.

These scissors feature a small, curved blade for comfortable and precise control. Plus, their sturdy yet smooth pivot action makes them ideal for quickly cutting materials with ease.

They feature a rounded tip that allows the blade to slide beneath the bandage you are cutting, protecting skin without damage. This enables you to make reliable cuts without risking skin damage or creating nicks and cuts on patients.

These 5 1/2 inch bandage scissors make an ideal choice for nursing and medical students, as they’re designed to be versatile and perform well on various fabrics and materials. They can be used to cut bandages, gauze, and tape, as well as many other medical materials and adhesives.

Trauma shears and bandage shears are two types of scissors used in medical care; although they share some similarities, there are important distinctions between them.

  • Materials

Bandage shears are designed to cut gauze, bandages, and cling wrap. Generally made of stainless steel, these tools can be easily cleaned, sterilized, and resharpened if necessary. The Caretek titanium bandage scissors angled design makes them ideal for slipping under clothing and bandages with ease.

Trauma shears are designed for heavier materials and typically feature tungsten carbide welding, which is five times harder than stainless steel and makes the blades sharper and longer lasting.

  • Shape

These blades come in either curved or straight shapes and feature different tip combinations to meet different cutting needs. Common configurations include S/S, S/B, and B/B combinations which all aim to slice tissue without exerting too much force.

Scissor blades come in various sizes and shapes, some with ring handle for ease of use. Some even feature slightly curved solid handles like eye scissors and rib shears.

  • Uses

These scissors can be used for a variety of cutting tasks, but their most frequent uses involve taking off dressings and blood clots. They may also be used to shave skin or perform minor suturing – however, it’s not advised to use them on open wounds.

Surgical scissors are widely used in hospitals, surgery, and outpatient clinics, physician offices, emergency care facilities, laboratories, autopsy facilities, and veterinary facilities. Furthermore, faculty from university medical schools as well as private and public research institutes, often utilize them.


When selecting Bandage scissors, it is essential to understand their intended use. Doing this will enable you to choose the optimal pair for your task at hand. If you wish to learn more about What is bandage scissors? Read here!


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