A rongeur is a strongly constructed instrument with a sharp-edged, scoop-shaped tip, used for gouging out bone. Rongeur is a French word that means rodent or 'gnawer'.
A rongeur can be used to open a window in bone, often in the skull. It is used in neurosurgery, podiatric surgery, and orthopedic surgery to expose areas for operation.
A rongeur is also used in oral maxillofacial surgery. It is also used in hand surgery to cut traumatic amputated bone to allow skin to be closed over the defect.
A rongeur can also be used in cadaver dissection lab to break through ribs when removing the anterior chest wall.