[in-sizh-uh n]


a cut, gash, or notch.
the act of incising.
a cutting into, especially for surgical purposes.
incisiveness; keenness.

Origin of incision

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin incīsiōn- (stem of incīsiō). See incise, -ion Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for incision

Contemporary Examples of incision

Historical Examples of incision

  • It is not necessary to sew up this incision in a long feathered specimen.


    Leon Luther Pray

  • The surgeon proceeded with the incision—as long as he was able.


    Robert Sheckley

  • The amputation, the incision, the probing had to be done then and there, on the instant.

    Charles Carleton Coffin

    William Elliot Griffis, D. D.

  • At first I made an incision into the skin, after the manner of surgeons when amputating a limb.

    The Severed Hand

    Wilhelm Hauff

  • They may be operated on by means of incision or extirpation.

British Dictionary definitions for incision



the act of incising
a cut, gash, or notch
a cut made with a knife during a surgical operation
any indentation in an incised leaf
rare incisiveness
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for incision

late 14c., "a cutting made in surgery," from Old French incision (13c.) and directly from Latin incisionem (nominative incisio) "a cutting into," noun of action from past participle stem of incidere "to cut in," from in- "into, in, on, upon" (see in- (2)) + -cidere, comb. form of caedere "to cut" (see -cide). Meaning "act of cutting into" is from early 15c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for incision




A cut into a body tissue or organ, especially one made during surgery.
The scar resulting from such a cut.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.