During a Caesarean, two incisions are made. The first incision is made to the skin and the second to the uterus wall. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the Caesarean, different types of incisions will be used.
Transverse: A transverse incision is a horizontal incision and is the most commonly used incision to the skin. This incision is also known as a “bikini” cut because it is cut right above the pubic hair line.
Vertical: A vertical incision is an incision that extends from right below the navel to right above the pubic hair line. This type of incision is rarely used as the first initial incision to the skin. In most cases, a vertical incision is only made during an emergency Caesarean because this incision allows quick access to the baby.
Depending on the circumstances, one of the two types of incisions will be made to the uterine wall. In most cases, a transverse incision is used since it is lower and forms a stronger scar. However, if the mother has placenta previa, or if the baby is in an abnormal position, a vertical incision may be necessary.