An early to mid 19th century grooved steel director mounted on an attractively carved round crosshatched ebony handle.
These were used as directors to guide instruments along a safe course into an abscess requiring aspiration. Either a narrow knife or a pair of dilating forceps would have been be passed along the groove to create a new opening or widen an existing fistula. In this way the opening to an an abscess or other cavity could be enlarged as the instruments were withdrawn, without cutting or causing haemorrhage.
- From the Phisick collection