A broken scalpel blade tip: An unusual complication of knee arthroscopy

Konrad I. Gruson, Kirill Ilalov, Thomas Youm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The case of a patient is presented in whom a No. 11 scalpel blade was inadvertently broken and embedded within the lateral femoral condyle during initial arthroscopic portal creation. After a thorough diagnostic arthroscopy and synovectomy to expose the distal femoral articular surface was unsuccessful, fluoroscopy was performed to localize the blade fragment in orthogonal planes. The blade tip was eventually retrieved from its position below the surface of the cartilage. The details of the loss and recovery of the blade fragment reinforce that exceptional care must be taken and attention given during the creation of portals, particularly when resistance is encountered. Additionally, all instruments, especially scalpel blades, should be examined carefully when removed from the knee joint.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)54-56
Number of pages3
JournalBulletin of the NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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