This instrument looks like a stylus having a scoop-shaped tip and a handle to be held in the hand. the tip of this tool may be angled and usually has a sharp blade. Curettes are available in different variations having different shapes and types.


A curette is a medical instrument that is specialized for debriding or scraping a surface such as a tooth, tissue, or the interior of the body opening. There are reusable and disposable versions available readily for different applications. They can also be used as practical hand tools for objects such as working ceramics. There are two broader categories of periodontal curettes i.e. universal and Gracey/area-specific curettes. The former version can be used in any area of the mouth and adapt to all teeth surfaces whereas the latter is designed to adapt to the specific area of the teeth.


A curette is widely used in different surgical procedures. Some important uses of curettes are as follows:


Reusable curettes can be reused after they are being sterilized. They can endure high pressure, heat, and harsh soaps used for cleaning surgical instruments. Disposable curettes can be used a single time and are lightweight instruments that are meant to be discarded. These curettes cannot be sterilized and overuse may cause a break down of the tool.

  • Biopsy
  • Scraping tissues in autopsy
  • Dental purposes such as tooth cleanings, removing dental calculus
  • A soft curette is used to remove ear wax to have a clearer view of the ear and protect from the building up of wax
  • Curettage and dilation where the tool is used to scrape out the uterus contents
  • Excision of some malignant and benign tumors

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