Intra-operative fatigue failure of hexagonal screwdriver tip – case report of a potential complication in trauma surgery
Ganesh Singh Dharmshaktu
Intra-operative instrument breakage is a potential complication that not only leads to increased surgical time and agony to the patient but also is a source of frustration to the surgeon. The retrieval of the broken hardware may pose another challenge and sub optimal outcome in certain cases. There are numerous reports describing breakage of different sorts of medical devices and instruments and improvised methods of their successful retrieval. Orthopedic surgery requires use of manual force with instrumentation and thus the risk for important hardware failure remains omnipresent. The hexagonal screw-driver is widely used to fasten bone screws and is subjected to higher torque leading to rotation and torsion forces that may lead to excessive stress on it that at times goes past its yield point. The present case report describes an untoward event of breakage of screwdriver tip during surgery and its management. The presented report underlines importance of anticipation of this underreported complication of a common procedure.