Difference between Bipolar & Monopolar Instruments

Difference between Bipolar & Monopolar Instruments

The basic difference between these two types of instruments is the way the electric current passes through them.

In case of Monopolar instruments the current passes through the tissue from electrode and returns through a separate pad placed under the patient and thus completing its circuit through patient’s body.

When it comes to bipolar instruments the current passes from one electrode of instrument to the tissue and returns to the other electrode of the same instrument. In other words, in bipolar instruments the current does not travel through patient’s body. As a result, the bipolar instruments require less electric current.

The downside of bipolar instruments is their limited ability to cut through large bleeding areas, that’s why it’s better to use bipolar instruments in procedures where tissues can be grabbed easily. This also gives better control over the cutting area and prevents damage to other sensitive tissues.


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