An endoscopic surgical instrument having a handle assembly, a body portion, and a tool mechanism in which a pivoting handle pivots about a stationary handle to open and close the tool mechanism. The instrument includes a rotatable body portion, in which a rotation knob is provided on the instrument at the stationary handle so that the user may rotate the body portion, and consequently the tool mechanism, using a single hand. Furthermore, an electrocautery connection is provided which is positioned out of the line of sight of the surgeon, so that the surgeon may have an unobstructed view to the surgical site. The pivoting handle is provided with a rotatable connection point for connecting the slidable rod member to essentially eliminate radial deflection of the rod within the outer tube during opening and closing of the handles. The tool mechanism may include grasping jaws having rounded, interdigitating teeth for grasping and securely holding tissue or organs for removal through a cannula.