An episiotomy is an incision made in the tissue between the vagina and anus (perineum) during childbirth, just before the baby's head is delivered. An episiotomy may be done to help deliver the baby or to help prevent the muscles and skin from tearing.

After delivery, an episiotomy incision is stitched closed. Episiotomies can be different depths. Smaller episiotomies heal faster and with less pain.

Current as of: February 20, 2015

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Kirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology