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the replacement in normal position of sections of bone displaced in a fracture. Displacement, which may be lateral, lengthwise, or at an angle to the periphery, results from a traumatizing force and muscle contraction. Elimination of the displacement by means of reposition is the basis of the treatment of fractures. The principle followed in reposition is the alignment of the peripheral section of bone along the axis of the central section.
Reposition may be closed (no incision is made) or open (a surgical incision is made). Open reposition is indicated when soft tissue is imprisoned between pieces of bone. Bones are repositioned manually, with instruments, or by means of skeletal or skin traction. Manual reposition, performed by a surgeon and one or two assistants, involves visual and tactile control. Traction, during which a pulling force causes all the principal muscle groups to relax uniformly, is used with fractures of the spine, pelvis, and long tubular bones, especially when there are major displacements. Reposition is performed under local or general anesthesia. Its results depend on the type and location of the fracture and the patient’s overall condition.