- Any sharp cutting instrument such as a knife, broken glass, razor blade will do, or the operator may have somehow acquired medical instruments like a scalpel, forceps or scissors.
- The instruments may be new or may have already been used for other purposes and/or on other persons.
- Sterilization is seldom known nor performed by these traditional operators.
- Regular surgical Catgut, Silk or Cotton thread.
- Domestic sewing thread.
- Vegetable or nylon fiber pre-selected by the operator.
- Regular surgical suturing needles
- (round bodied or sharp and any size)
- Domestic sewing needle.
Approximating the Wound
In some cases, instead of suturing together the raw edges of the wound, these are held together with thorns that are inserted on opposite sides of the wound and then laced together with thread and left in place for seven days or until the tissues of the wound have had time to fuse together. This type of infibulation is often practiced by nomads and agro–pastoralists.
Condition of Hands
- No gloves are worn during the operation.
- Hands may or may not be washed and in any case wet fingers are slippery and should the operator have difficulty in pinching the skin being removed, it is not unlikely for the operator to wipe his/her hands on the thighs of the child or even on the sand on the ground in order to dry them and thus improve dexterity!
- The operator allows his/her nails to grow as they are used as pincers during operations. Rings, amulets and other hand ornaments are rarely removed, as these items are not recognized by the traditional healer as likely sources of contamination.