Last revised by Daniel J Bell on 22 Sep 2023

Incarcerated (also referred to as irreducible) is used to describe herniae, in which their contents are unable to pass back through the hernial opening to their anatomical site of origin 5

Incarceration is a risk factor for bowel obstruction and strangulation, and therefore usually necessitates urgent surgery 5.

Irreducible is also used to describe joint dislocations which cannot be easily relocated; although its synonym incarcerated is only rarely employed in this sense 6,7.

Incarcerated abdominal hernia can be suggested when a hernia went through a small defect with a narrow neck. Impending strangulation should be suspected when free fluid, thickened bowel wall, or luminal dilatation is present 5.

Incarcerate is probably a retronym from incarceration, itself derived from 'incarceratus', a Medieval Latin word, a past participle form of incarcerare, which meant to put into prison. Ultimately it derived from the Latin words 'in', meaning in, and 'carcer', meaning a secluded place or prison 3.

ADVERTISEMENT: Supporters see fewer/no ads

Updating… Please wait.

 Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

 Thank you for updating your details.