Minor Surgery Kit Includes Surgical Forceps, Scalpel, Tweezers and More
A minor surgery kit should make up part of your first aid kit as part of your survival preparations. Your first aid kit should contain enough equipment to deal with most common scratches and wounds, but there will be times when one of your party gets a serious injury that requires more than a Band Aid or a bandage.
This might be a deep wound, infected flesh or an embedded object, all of which are easy to do in a survival situation and having the right equipment could make the difference between life and death away from modern civilization. Having a surgery kit might also help a medical person who doesn’t have the equipment, to deal with the situation in a time without easily available medical care or stocked ERs.
What to Include in a Minor Surgery Kit
Ideally, there should be as little overlap between your minor surgery kit and your regular first aid kit so that you're not carrying around lots of duplicated extra weight. There will be some items that should appear in both to save you the hassle of having both packs open, but your minor surgery kit should include the following as bare essentials:
- Scalpel - you should have a minimum of two scalpels in the pack with blades of different thicknesses for cutting through skin, flesh and ligaments. Your pack should also contain spare blades in case one breaks or becomes dull as they are very hard to sharpen.
- Forceps - a pair of forceps will be used to hold open wounds while you clear out any debris or infection. For a minor surgery kit, they don't need to be enormous but they will need to have enough strength to keep at least an inch of flesh apart without causing a massive strain on the person wielding the forceps.
- Surgical scissors - these are sharper and narrower than a regular pair of kitchen scissors and are generally used to cut through clothing and to neaten up the top layer of skin to make it easier to suture back together. They can also be used in place of a scalpel if time is precious, but they don't give you the same precision or cutting power.
- Tweezers - tweezers are useful for all sorts of minor medical emergencies from removing splinters to getting large bits of debris out of wounds. In an ideal world, you'll have a couple of different sizes of tweezers, with one small enough to grip miniscule slivers of wood and one larger to deal with small stones and bits of grit inside wounds.
- Anti septic wipes - these, alongside a good supply of sterilizing strips, are the most important part of your surgery kit. Infection can kill out in a survival situation, so not only do you need to make sure that the wound and surrounding area is clean, and kept clean post surgery, but you'll also use these to sterilize your equipment in between uses.
- Surgical needle and thread - finally, a surgical needle and suture thread completes your pack as it gives you the capability to deal with deep and wide wounds. There is no wrong way to sew up human skin as long as the stitches hold and all of the internal flesh is covered up and many survivalists maintain that if you can sew cloth, you can sew skin. You may want to get your team doctor to practice on pigskin ahead of time if they have no official medical training to get them used to the force needed to sew human skin together.
It is possible to make your own minor surgery kit from scratch, buying each of the individual items separately. However, a better option is to spend the $30 a readymade pack costs, as you'll know that all of the instruments will be there in a pack designed to save as much space as possible. It may be more expensive than constructing your own, but the peace of mind will be worth it.
Return from Minor Surgery Kit to Survival Medicine
Print This Page