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1. the act or operation of holding, suturing, or fastening in a fixed position.
2. the condition of being held in a fixed position.
3. in psychiatry, a term with two related but distinct meanings: (a) arrest of development at a particular stage (if this is temporary it is a normal reaction to difficulties, but if continued it is a cause of emotional problems); and (b) a close and suffocating attachment to some person, especially a childhood figure such as a parent.
4. in microscopy, the treatment of material so that its structure can be examined in greater detail with minimal alteration of the normal state, and also to provide information concerning the chemical properties (as of cell constituents) by interpretation of fixation reactions.
5. in chemistry, the process whereby a substance is removed from the gaseous or solution phase and localized, as in carbon dioxide or nitrogen fixation.
6. in ophthalmology, direction of the gaze so that the visual image of the object falls on the fovea centralis.
7. in film processing, the chemical removal of all unexposed and undeveloped silver compounds of the film emulsion, as on x-ray films.
complement fixation see complement fixation.
intermaxillary fixation (IMF) a technique used to stabilize a fractured jaw; the teeth are wired or banded together. Extreme caution must be exercised to insure that oral secretions and vomitus are not aspirated as the patient is unable to expectorate any fluids. Antiemetics are often administered to prevent vomiting. Wire cutters should be kept with the patient at all times.
fixation of fractures of the mandible or maxilla by applying elastic bands or stainless steel wire between the maxillary and mandibular arch bars or other types of splint.