Stuck Titanium Ring Removal

For your safety, never wear any type of ring around open machinery, while operating heavy machinery, electrical equipment, or while participating in physical sports.

Titanium Ring Removal

A rumor regarding titanium rings maintains that the metal is so strong it cannot be cut and that if a titanium ring gets stuck on a swollen finger, the finger will need to be broken or amputated to get the ring off. This is completely untrue. In fact, you can use a variety of removal techniques to safely and effectively remove a titanium ring.


Non-Destructive Removal

If you need to remove a titanium ring from a severely swollen hand or finger, raise the arm and hold the hand in the air, which forces blood to flow away from the finger and back into the body. After a few minutes, the swelling should be reduced. If the finger is still significantly swollen, soak it in ice water for a few minutes to reduce inflammation. Once the swelling has gone down slightly, apply a lubricant around the finger and knuckle. Effective lubricants include petroleum jelly, lotion, liquid soap, olive oil or saliva. Hold the titanium ring with a towel and pull with a gentle, yet forceful twisting and rocking motion. Once the ring passes over the swollen knuckle, it will usually slide easily over the rest of the finger.

Dental Floss Trick

If you cannot remove the ring with a lubricant, try using a long piece of dental floss. For best results, use the flat version of dental floss, as this rests more snugly against the finger. You will need at least 2 feet of dental floss for this technique. Begin by sliding a few inches of dental floss under the ring, toward the body. The long end should extend toward the swollen joint. Grab the long end of the floss and wrap it tightly around the finger, starting just above the titanium ring. The dental floss should be extremely snug against the finger; the goal is to compress the swelling as much as possible. Each row of floss should sit snugly against the previous row. Continue wrapping until just beyond the swollen finger joint. Take hold of the short end of the dental floss, which should still be tucked under the ring. Use a gentle, slow motion to unwrap the dental floss from the finger. As the floss unwinds from the finger, the ring should be pushed along with it. Once the ring passes over the swollen joint, remove it and quickly unwrap the rest of the dental floss. To visualize this you can simply do a search online to find a video demonstration of this technique and others, as many demonstrations exist.

Cut the Metal

If these nondestructive methods are not effective, you may need to cut the titanium ring off the finger using a standard jewelry cutter or rotary cut-off tool. Titanium rings can be cut off with a manual or motorized ring cutting tool. All 3 grades of titanium: aircraft grade Ti-64, super hard Ti-662 and pure Ti-CP can be cut off with this tool. Most hospitals have motorized ring-cutting tools available that can remove the ring in a matter of minutes. For safe removal, the ring likely will need to be cut on both sides of the band, separating the ring into two halves.


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