Fishhook removal: case reports and a review of the literature

J Emerg Med. 2013 Jun;44(6):e375-80. doi: 10.1016/j.jemermed.2012.11.058. Epub 2013 Mar 9.


Background: Fishhook injuries are common among people who fish for recreation, but can be encountered in anyone who has handled a fishhook. They represent a unique challenge for Emergency Physicians who seek to remove them without causing further tissue damage from the barbed nature of the hook.

Objective: Our aim was to discuss the techniques available to providers in the removal of a barbed fishhook by illustrating actual cases seen in the Emergency Department.

Case reports: We present two cases of patients with fishhook injuries. We discuss the proper assessment of these injuries. We describe techniques for removing a barbed hook from a patient's skin and offer images to guide management.

Conclusions: Understanding the unique nature of fishhook injuries and awareness of techniques to manage them are essential to the practicing Emergency Physician.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anesthetics, Local / administration & dosage
  • Animals
  • Emergency Service, Hospital
  • Female
  • Finger Injuries / therapy*
  • Fishes
  • Foreign Bodies / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Recreation
  • Wounds, Penetrating / therapy*
  • Young Adult


  • Anesthetics, Local